Chamber considers Strawberry juice for Two Rivers Park |

Chamber considers Strawberry juice for Two Rivers Park

Lynn Burton
Post Independent Staff

For a $10,000 electrical upgrade, Strawberry Days could relocate to Two Rivers Park.

That’s the word from the Glenwood Springs Electric Department, as the Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association continues negotiations with the city to move Strawberry Days from Sayre Park to Two Rivers Park.

“It isn’t a whole lot of money,” said John Hines, superintendent of the Glenwood Springs Electric Department.

Chamber Resort Association Director Marianne Virgili said any announcement of a Strawberry Days move is “premature,” and there’ll be a lot of public input before a decision is made.

“But this is the most serious talk I’ve heard,” said Hines, who has worked for the city for 21 years.

The chamber has held the annual Strawberry Days celebration on Grand Avenue at Sayre Park for as long as most people can remember. Virgili said the chamber has considered moving the event to Two Rivers Park for several years, but a shortage of electricity has always been the problem.

The bandshell has electricity, Virgili said, but there is no power for the dozens of food vendors who crowd into Sayre Park each year.

“You can’t have booths without electricity,” she said.

Hines and other city officials met with chamber representatives and Strawberry Days Committee members two months ago to discuss holding the event at Two Rivers Park.

Hines said “food alley” could be located on the north side of the park, extending east from the rest rooms that face the softball field. The city could set a new transformer near the rest rooms at a cost of about $5,000. For another $5,000, the city could place five to six electrical pedestals that would feed the food booths with power.

There aren’t any technical problems associated with the electrical upgrade. “It’s not a big issue for us,” Hines said.

The project would take two or three weeks to complete.

Hines said that even if Strawberry Days stays at Sayre Park, the city will have to upgrade the electrical system there.

“We’ve maxed it out,” he said.

Virgili said the chamber is looking at moving Strawberry Days for several reasons. For one, Two Rivers Park is bigger than Sayre Park. Sayre Park also sits right on Grand Avenue, and only a sidewalk separates the heavy traffic from the crowds inside the park.

“It’s all about size, and safety,” Virgili said.

Parking would be more difficult at Two Rivers Park than at Sayre Park, which is surrounded on three sides by residential streets, but the city now has a bus system that could help transport people to and from Two Rivers, Virgili said.

As for the annual Strawberry Days parade, Virgili said it could start at the south end of Grand Avenue and conclude downtown, rather than the other way around as it has for years.

If Strawberry Days moves from Sayre Park to Two Rivers Park, it will be substituting busy Grand Avenue frontage for Colorado River frontage.

At the east end of the park the river runs deep under a steep cliff, but it goes shallow enough for the raft launch at the park’s west end. Hines said proximity to the Colorado River might not be a bad thing.

“It could be a good place to cool off,” he said.

Contact Lynn Burton: 945-8515, ext. 534

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