Letter: Legion campers are good neighbors
My first response to this (Legion Campground) proposal was shock.Then I was offended.I take great offense to the statement about making the area more of a neighborhood.
We are so much more than a neighborhood. We are a community within the city of Detroit Lakes in our own right. We are friends, neighbors, family and totally committed to the beautification of our summer homes.
We are excited to open and sad to close. We remain in contact over the winter. To imply we are not a neighborhood can only be taken as an insult. There is also the lack of consideration for the families that have retired from May to Oct. 1 in that very campground. This is their summer home.
We spend a great deal of money in the city. We pay taxes and contribute enormously to the merchants in Detroit Lakes. Imagine what we have spent Menards in the last few years building decks and sheds. Let's not forget the business we bring to the Marina and the places that sell campers in your city. Those businesses would certainly miss the purchases of pontoons, boats, campers and motors.
When I was a teenager, the beach at Detroit Lakes was always packed. I remember waiting for someone to leave a spot so I could run and place a towel down to stake claim to a spot. It isn't like that anymore.
We were tourists, not permanent residents of the city. Those of us that live in the campground feel Detroit Lakes is our home, and yet we are summer visitors. Most of us do manage to come together at the lake during winter months. Again spending money in the city.
We have been residents of the campground for 12 years. We consider it our home, and to imply that somehow we live sub-par is insulting. The demographics are not showing that these ideas for West Lake Drive will be profitable for the city.
The new hotel, while attractive, shows an empty parking lot. Of course it was busy at first, but is it busy now? No it is not.
The tax dollars the city gets from the campground are solid and guaranteed. There is a waiting list to get a permanent spot in the campground. There was also a donation to the city from the revenue generated by the campground of $50,000 to renovate the city bath houses along the beach. The Legion supports many programs in the city, without the campground it is unlikely the Legion would be able to continue this support. Please reconsider your plan to remove such a treasured neighborhood.—Tara Dvorak, summer resident of Detroit Lakes