One day while in a deep Buckley’s induced sleep I was awoken by the clang of bells from the Mackenzie rail crossing. The bells seemed to say, “If you build it they will come.” Puzzled because the phrase is normally associated with a baseball diamond and our current civic mantra is “tear them down, we have too many.”
I had to consider other meanings. It finally came to me the next morning in one of my regular conversations with my Bylaw Buddies regarding my illegal sign at the old PT Market building. I have been approaching the issue all wrong. What we need is a bigger sign that would drive the employment engine and power Revelstoke to be an economic superpower.
Our city forefathers had the insight in 2008 to write a sign bylaw that allowed for the near unlimited use and size of sandwich boards.The World’s Largest Sandwich Board is just the thing we need to bring visitors and the resulting prosperity to Revelstoke! I have watched with jealousy how those towns with giant eggs, spoons, hockey sticks and other magnificent structures have prospered while we remain stagnant.
Since the beginning of time, we have searched for the one item that would be the key to our prosperity. First it was the Columbia River, then gold and continuing on with the Railway, National Parks, the Mica Dam, Trans-Canada Highway, Revelstoke Dam, back to the Railway with the MacDonald tunnel and finally ending recently the benevolent Denver ski hill developer and his promises of caviar in our bellies and a Mercedes in every driveway.
All of these projects cower in comparison to the World’s Largest Sandwich Board. Messages on the board could be seen from cars going by on the highway, passing airliners and even by Russian cosomonauts in the International Space Station urging them to quit their jobs and come to Revelstoke to open a Booster Juice.
The board would celebrate times gone by. Remember when carbon was that black piece of paper that you used to make multiple copies or those times before Google when businesses needed signs for their customers to find them and to entice passing customers with daily specials or free flowers ?
The whole city could get into the spirit by displaying their wares in all shapes and sizes of sandwich boards. Street signs could be in the shape of sandwich boards.
To ensure this is truly a public project, it would be fully funded by public money. To ensure the legacy is spread throughout the generations (people not Hydro), it should be financed over a 25-year period.
To ensure value for money, we would purchase all of the materials from suppliers in Kelowna or Kamloops. For insurance purposes, all material would have to be new. No used or recycled material would be allowed. Volunteers with 4Runners or Subarus would be need to transport the materials back to Revelstoke.
I believe the best location would be on the flats near the airport. Negotiations could occur with local landowners for road access and financing for the road would be strictly by infastructure grants from other levels of government although we should give some consideration to private money through the sale of naming rights to the access road.
Public input regarding environmental impact would be through roving charettes with marching bands and jugglers to entertain and encourage participation.
Any income made directly from the board would be distributed to 99% of the population based on an income formula determined by a committee made up of at least 30 different socio-economic and cultural groups that reside in Revelstoke. Regional District residents would be excluded.
Please join me in promoting “Revelstoke – Home of the World’s Largest Sandwich Board.” My wife says that size matters so let’s go BIG.