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May 11, 2012

Restaurant withdraws car cruise request

NEW CASTLE — Eat ’n Park Restaurant has withdrawn its request to host a car cruise in July.

Mark Grashoff, district manager of Eat ‘n Park Hospitality Group, said in a May 9 letter to New Castle city officials, “As we are unable to obtain the permission and permits necessary to properly execute the event in such a manner that will be beneficial to both the community and ourselves we are compelled to withdraw our application.”

The letter was read at city council’s meeting Thursday night.

On April 12, council voted 3-2 to approve the restaurant’s request to close the Innerbelt on both sides of West Washington Street from 5 to 11 p.m. July 6 and 7 for a car cruise. That is the same weekend as Back to the 50’s at Cascade Park.

Ed Yerage, who voted against the request, questioned at the time why the restaurant was piggybacking on Back to the 50’s and would hurt the Cascade Park event. He added the restaurant could hold the cruise 51 other weeks of the year.

Larry Cioffi, representing Back to the 50’s, said that as a result of council’s vote, this could be the last year for the event to be held at Cascade Park.

At council’s April 26 meeting, there was discussion of possibly reaching a compromise.

On council’s agenda Thursday night was a resolution changing the times for street to be closed for the Eat ‘n Park cruise to 8 to 11 p.m.

Because of Grashoff’s letter, council did not vote on the resolution.

After some discussion — some of it heated — Mayor Anthony Mastrangelo said he would talk with Eat ‘n Park about reconsidering.

Councilman Thomas Smith commented, “Let’s build a bridge for these two parties.”

He said it may be too late for this year, but it could happen for 2013.


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