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Letters to the Editor

Historic turnout for Taste of Joliet

To the Editor:

On the weekend of June 21-23, the Joliet Park District held its largest annual event of the year, Taste of Joliet, at ATI Field at Joliet Memorial Stadium.

We hosted the largest three-day combined crowd in the 14-year history of the event with 55,000 guests. The crowd on the night of June 22 topped out at 28,000. This was our highest attended single-day event to date.

That’s a lot of people in one place. For perspective, the United Center holds 23,500 for a Bulls game, and the Hollywood Casino Amphitheater in Tinley Park holds 28,000.

During the three-day event, there were no arrests and only a handful of EMT calls, none serious. We owe those amazing statistics to the excellent work by the Joliet Police and Joliet Fire departments. Everyone working the Taste of Joliet went above and beyond the call of duty to keep our guests, food vendors, employees and volunteers safe.

On June 23, we had 5,000 to 6,000 people in the stadium right after we opened at 12:30 p.m.

A strong weather cell was spotted on radar. The Joliet Police executed an orderly, safe evacuation of the open field, including food vendors, dining tents, beer tent and carnival, sending people to their cars or under the stadium bleachers.

The weather came in fierce but passed quickly and everyone returned to the stadium with another 3,000 to 4,000 guests to finish the day.

On behalf of the Joliet Park District board of commissioners, thank you for your great work at our biggest annual event. We couldn’t do it without you!

Sue Gulas

Joliet Park Board of Commissioners President

Taxes necessary, but so is reform

To the Editor:

The article in opinions on July 5 was more of a hope list, hoping that the legislators/politicians perform for all the electorate rather than self-

Improving infrastructure is a must, and the additional gas tax is understandable. Putting the gas tax funds into a “lockbox” is an interesting idea, but only serves as a speed bump in their legislative agenda of complete control of all the state’s money.

A good example would be the Social Security “lockbox” that has been raided several times with the promise to the American people of replacing these funds. We still are waiting for repayment.

Most of us have been around long enough to know the games that Springfield plays by expanding the definition of infrastructure perhaps to include Hawaiian vacations, cruises or golf packages in Scotland under the guise of “infrastructure research.”

By putting the progressive tax on the ballot in 2020, they are asking the remaining Illinois residents to sign a blank check to the Illinois Legislature, authorizing annual tax increases for all tax-paying residents.

Things that should have been included on that ballot are things such as pension reform, term limits and accountability. Term limits should be addressed for the simple fact that nobody should accumulate such power for the benefit of only a few.

Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Some might consider this skeptical, but this is being a realist.

Robert Ciesiel


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