Plans to shut down Main Street for the Ridgway Chainsaw Carvers Rendezvous were quickly stifled by PennDOT officials as borough council and event organizers struggle to settle on an agreeable locale.
After the initial plans for Main Street were halted, talks of returning the event to the Ridgway Firemen's Carnival Lot along North Broad Street were shot down as borough officials have reportedly been entertaining thoughts of holding the event on Court and Center Streets in down Ridgway.
"I'm OK with having it on a borough street as long as the borough has a contract with the Bonis," said borough councilman Frank Quattrone. "Someone has to maintain the borough street-- who knows what the weather will be like that week?-- I worry about the noise from the chainsaws, I just have a whole lot of concerns.
"They're going to have skidders around, they're going to be bringing trucks in, there will be tents up. I'm concerned with how the jail [officials] feel, I'm concerned about David Pontzer, the bank."
For Quattrone, several concerns cannot go ignored including noise and parking issues.
"Court Street is always jammed with cars so you have to find alternative parking for a bunch of cars on that street, not counting the people who are going to drive it with the event to begin with," Quattrone said. "Somehow the borough is going to have to keep track of man-hours because there would be sawdust all over the place.
"It's an awful lot of questions-- will our streets department have to work extra since we're talking about a ton of sawdust? They're going to have to suck out the inlets for the sawdust. We'll have fuel and man-hours in on this and we'll have to think all that out."
Another possible spot mentioned by Quattrone was the parking lot at 20 Main Street in Ridgway.
"I mentioned using behind the old Ridgway Record office and I was told it isn't big enough," Quattrone said. "I still think, in my personal opinion, having it at that location still would be enough room versus Center Street. I think all that would fit but you'd have to work out something with parking and the property-owners since there would be chainsaws running all day.
"I think that area would be better than an actual street but your'e still going to have the parking problem no matter where you go. They're running out of places that they can do this. I mentioned the old Ridgway Record office twice now but nothing."
Quattrone said he hopes citizens will attend the council's next meeting Monday, Dec. 19 at 7 p.m. to provide input on the issues.
"I'd like to have input from the citizens and that's the way it should be," Quattrone said. "Parking is always an issue and that's just the way it is. If I have to make a vote, it has to be to support the people."
Pick up a copy of the Monday, Dec. 12, 2011 edition of The Ridgway Record for more.