If you read this column in the past issue of the Peabody Gazette-Bulletin, you also should have wandered downtown Sunday morning to see the turn out for the third Peabody Cruise. We didn’t knock anyone’s socks off in the vintage automobile category, but there were about 75 motorcycle riders who showed up to look around, shop, eat, and explore downtown Peabody before heading on to other parts of Kansas on their weekend ride.
I understand the folks who organized Peabody Cruise call themselves the “Dream it, Do it” group. It is a band of like-minded people trying to do something positive for the community and businesses. In my opinion, just about every small town has a Downtown Whiner’s Association, but not many are blessed with a group that wears T-shirts that say, “Dream it, Do it.”
Making Peabody a destination stop one Sunday a month is a worthwhile effort. The event cannot hold a candle to the July Fourth extravaganza that draws thousands for a day filled with activities and topped off with a spectacular fireworks show. However, that celebration did not bring in thousands of people either the first dozen or so times it was staged. Some events grow with time and a presence in a community. We should give this a chance.
Good luck to those organizing and promoting the monthly cruise. It is a nice hometown-type event that boosts a bit of revenue downtown, highlights the community, and brings in friendly visitors. I hope it grows.
In a similar vein, the Cal Ripken district and state tournaments played at Peabody City Park during July made cash registers ring for several food vendors and local merchants. Despite an effort to bring visitors downtown to shop between games, the guests were chiefly interested in food and drinks. Our restaurants did a landslide business and visiting parents ran back and forth between the grocery store and park with bottled water, energy drinks, and snacks.
We are blessed with a great park. It provides a wonderful venue for many events. Peabody has been host to Cal Ripken tournaments in the past and visiting teams enjoy their time here. It took many volunteer hours to provide the personnel needed to staff each tournament — another “Dream it, Do it” type group of volunteers in action. Thanks to Peabody Senior Babe Ruth team and many others, two more events that were a success took place here.
Volunteers who spend time organizing special events that promote the community and help us put our best face forward deserve our appreciation for the jobs they do. Be sure to tell them.