Don't Toy with Me, Bird Lover
I haven't ridden a bike in 20 years, but "Panic in Memorial Park" by Steve McVicker [News, May 19] has encouraged my 40-plus bones to mount up. I'll be riding my 30-year-old (big tire) bike painted Army green. Anyone carrying binoculars could be a target.
As a private-property activist, I've learned that Audubon has little to do with birds or nature and a lot to do with control. Audubon radicals are attacking planes, bulldozers and road projects and are now (can you believe?!) outlawing bicycle rides in the park.
To please these extremists, HAMBRA (Houston Area Mountain Bike Riders Association) will have to change to HASBRO (Houston Area Stationary Bike Riders Organization).
Do not follow where the path may lead. Go, instead, where there is no path and ride the Ho Chi Minh trails.
Since Steve McVicker's article ["Panic in Memorial Park"], representatives of the Houston Area Mountain Bike Riders Association (HAMBRA) have met with William Smith, director of the Parks and Recreation Department, and with members of several of the environmental preservation groups that want to see mountain biking outlawed in Memorial Park. As a result of the flood of letters and calls from concerned cyclists to Mayor Lanier's office, City Council and the Parks Department, Mr. Smith and his department have indicated that a compromise plan may be in order.
HAMBRA, with the guidance of the Parks Department, is now developing a long-term plan that will enable responsible cycling access to continue at the park. The basic points of the plan are as follows: (1) immediate survey of the existing trails with a consulting landscape architect; (2) signs including rules of the trails will be erected at the major trail entrances to the park; (3) a user fee or pass system will be developed and implemented with the help of the Parks Department and likely administered by local bicycle dealers. The majority of the money raised from these passes will be designated for trail maintenance; (4) HAMBRA and the Parks Department will begin to seek other areas within the city where mountain bike trails could exist.
We believe this is a reasonable plan, and we sense that the Parks Department agrees.
David K. Smith
HAMBRA board member
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The Wilted Toque
I was dismayed to learn that Charles Oewel shut Monica Pope out of the restaurant that she created [News, "Restaurant Wars," by Alison Cook, May 26]. Without Monica Pope, the Quilted Toque is gone; it no longer exists. It appears that Oewel has cut off his nose to spite his face. How sad that the rest of us will be deprived of a lovely restaurant because of this man's lack of vision.
An A+ Story
This is a very belated "thank you." I should have written this the day my co-teacher for environmental science got disapproving looks for "appropriating" 25 copies of the January 20 Houston Press from a local store. The cover story was on the Katy Prairie ["Why the Katy Prairie Matters," by Michael Berryhill]. Michael Berryhill's comprehensive coverage of the issue launched a project that our environmental science students continue to pursue.
Thanks for the free classroom curriculum. Top-notch material!