CPA Picnic one for the money
Is it us or has CPA started to stand for Carnival Prices Annoying? In what should be a celebration of all that is right with a small town, CPA has become a costly venture for families because of the way the carnival pricing is handled.
Families with kids have to pay for every ride the kids want to do. The current pricing structure has become so costly it's as much to satisfy the kids' excitement at Worlds of Fun as it is at CPA. And the rides aren't nearly as fun (or so they tell us). If a family has to spend $1.50 per ticket on silly little kids' rides, it will affect attendance down the road, and that's the last thing CPA needs. The picnic should be affordable for families to enjoy the festivities without having to go to the Kaw Valley Bank ATM multiple times.
Wouldn't it be easier on everyone if they charged a set price for the night, and let the kids go on the rides as many times as they wanted? Can't the CPA committee set the policy on how rides are charged? If not, maybe it's time to consider another carnival company.
In De Soto, the Watermelon Festival has wristband night, which allows the parents to pay one set price for a night of fun. That price should be fair, and agreed upon by the local organizers. If they can do it six miles down the road, it ought to be possible here.
That said, we commend all who worked so hard to make CPA a success. From the first activities to the closing Saturday night, Eudora residents who make this event happen deserve a pat on the back. There are far too many names to mention, but we'll start and finish with Jerry Trober. His annual job of putting the picnic together means hours of unpaid labor, and for that we thank him. His challenge to improve the picnic every year gets tough. We offer him our two cents' worth, which may save residents more than a couple cents.
First, move the golf tournament to a different course. As much as Oak Country is an enjoyable place for beginners and locals, it's always fun to play at a championship level course. There are lots of area courses that come to mind, including Eagle Bend and Alvamar. For $50, this was a tough putt to make. (We'd also suggest breaking up the team of Dale Sample and Rod Moyer, but that's another editorial).
Second, offer the carnival at one price for the whole night. It's easier on the parents' state of mind and pocketbooks. It probably would be just as cost-effective for the operators in the long run.
Finally, maybe it's time to give Eudora a premier athletic event that draws people from all over the area. It may be fun to have the "fun run" in the evening, and have it finish downtown so runners can finish in front of the crowd. The race could finish right before the start of the carnival, which would bring families watching participants to downtown. This also eliminates having to make a decision between golfing and running, since both were at the same time this year. It may be a little hotter, so shorten the race to a five-kilometer run, a more racer-friendly standard.
These suggestions are not meant to take away from the hard work put in by so many people. CPA is an event of which Eudora should be proud. With a little tweaking, it could be even better for all involved.