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2018 Cruisin the Coast Report Reflects Huge Positive Economic Impact

by Calvin Ishee

According to Adam Pace; Pass Christian representative for 2018 Cruisin’ the Coast, last year’s program was an overwhelming success for the Pass as well as the entire Mississippi Gulf Coast. Pace quoted from a “Cruisin the Coast Economic Assessment Report” conducted by Bradley Research, that noted the following: the number of cars registered has grown from 5,365 in 2004 to almost 8,500 in 2018; tax revenues have increased from $1M to $2M; participation from outside Mississippi has grown from 30 States and Canada to 44 States, Canada, Australia and Germany; and overall revenue has grown from $13.8M to almost $30M.

Additionally, Pace reported that an estimated 5,000 spectators attended the Pass Burn Out event, which is the only burn out event associated with Cruisin the Coast. Although specific numbers were not available, local businesses reported a huge increase in business during the three day Cruisin’ the Coast event held in the Pass.

Finally, Pace stated that Pass Christian Main Street funded the band at a cost of $3,500 and the group was able to recoup these funds by handling the various vendors who participated in the event.

In further discussion, Mayor Leo “Chipper” McDermott made it a point to clarify the City had budgeted $25,000 in 2018 and has allocated 2019 in support of Pass’s Cruisin’ the Coast.  McDermott noted that if the City was to get out of Cruisin’ the Coast and wanted to get back in, it would cost $35,000 instead of $25,000.

Overall Board members expressed their support for Cruisin’ the Coast but wanted to make sure that all expenses were properly captured and included in the budget prior to the event. The Mayor and Board thanked Adam Pace for his service and volunteering to oversee this extremely large and worthwhile event. Pace said that “I volunteer my time to help the City grow economically and will continue to do that in the future”.

In gratitude for investing 60 plus hours to restore a badly deteriorated wooden carving of an eagle located in Memorial Park, Mayor Leo “Chipper” McDermott presented the key to the City to Randy Shaw and his grandson Carl Stegall. The pair braved the elements to save this beautiful piece of art that certainly would have been destroyed had they not volunteered to restore it to it’s original form.

Barring any unforeseen circumstances, the pair want to begin work sometime in June restoring other wooden sculptures that are also deteriorating due to the weather. This time however, they’ll be asking for local volunteers to help with this Herculean effort.

There’s a new daiquiri shop in Pass Christian called The Pass Daq and FroYo Shoppe received Board approval to expand their current daiquiri cup sizes of 12 and 16 ounces to an unlimited size. According to Meghan Bailey, shoppe manager, they will now offer a 32 ounce cup as well as the options of buying daiquiris by the half gallon and whole gallon. Furthermore customers will also be allowed to get them “to go”.

Their grand opening/ribbon cutting is scheduled for June 7th at 10 a.m.

In other matters, the Board unanimously approved fee request waivers from the Pass Christian High School Alumni Association for the use of the Randolph Center on Tuesday, May 14, 1019.  The annual Ice Cream party for graduating seniors as well as from First United Methodist Church for it’s Fall BBQ will be held at War Memorial Park on Saturday, June 1, 2019.

It was a good day for receiving money as the Board unanimously accepted a $5,000 donation from St. Paul’s Carnival Association and a check from Long Beach Auto Auction Inc for $2,850.  Anne James, St. Paul Carnival Association President expressed the $5,000 was for the “hard work and dedication that our City workers and first responders provide to the Association”.  The $2,850 was the result of the sale of three old city vehicles, a 2005 Ford F-150 and two 2008 Crown Victoria’s.

In the personnel arena, the BOA approved the resignation of Police Officer Steven Holmes and the hiring of part-time Police Officer Michael Naught.

The Mississippi Attorney General’s Office approved the City’s Interlocal agreement with Harrison County for replacement of the Clark Street Bridge. Mayor McDermott declared that the work could begin within three months.

The next PC BOA meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 21st at 6 p.m.  There will also be a public hearing to discuss the Draft Short-Term Rental Ordinance on Tuesday, May 28th, 6 p.m. at the PC Municipal Courtroom. This draft ordinance can be found on the City’s website: www.pass-Christian.com.

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