A blog about movies and the Sturbridge area, including The Brookfields, Brimfield, Charlton, Holland, Wales, and Spencer as well as adjacent towns.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Casino Update

Let me get this out front. I admire Fred McLennan for what he is trying to do, but I am not sure he is completely sane.

The latest Quaboag Current dated January 8, 2010 has a front page article by Melissa Fales outlining the recent progress of the Casino renovation project. Fred has an agreement in place that he must meet to go forward. He must get scaffolding in place. January 14 he must submit an engineering report as to the work needed. According to Mary T, town clerk, he must pay the $10,000 back taxes. The building must be “safe” by February 23.

Actually, with the fence, it is safer than walking across the street. Of course, we don’t stop people from driving cars or crossing streets because those acts are inherently unsafe.

I understand town officials pushing your man to stay on time. Time is of the essence and I’m sure they have had many dealings with entities who never kept promises.

Still, every case is unique and should be judged on its own merits. If Fred is squeezed too much and the town takes the Casino for taxes in this business environment not much is going to happen. Logically, if the building is “unsafe” then once it is in town hands it should be taken down. Then what? In this economy, just a hole in the middle of town.

This building is town history. It is something that can bind generations. Don’t think that is important? You may be right. Hey, I’m a history nerd and maybe a fool for thinking so. The Roman orator Cicero said, “A person who does not know of events before his own time remains ever a child.” The analogy is not perfect, but no connection with our past leaves us orphans in the worst sense of the word.

Whatever my questions about Fred's mental status,he must know he can't become rich over this. He is doing this, I would guess, because movies are what he does. Any one else coming here would be only bottom line and it would never happen. Granted, Fred can't ignore that bottom line, but it is not why he is here.

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