Cañon City cruise still happened despite mayor's request

Dozens drive Main with a message for local leaders
Canon City cruise still happened despite mayor's request
Posted at 10:15 PM, May 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-02 00:43:20-04

CAÑON CITY — Dozens of people drove down Main Street on May 1 in Cañon City, despite a request from the mayor to stop the cruises.

The Mayor of Cañon City released a response to the drives on Friday. There have been three of these cruises so far. Read the full statement here: City of Cañon City responds to Friday night cruises

In the statement, the mayor said some small businesses agree with the city's position, and believe these events could further delay the reopening of their town. However, others disagree, and showed up to cruise Main Street once again, while also having more of a message for their local leaders than they did last week. "We as American citizens have a constitution and it is being violated as we stand here today, and it has got to quit," said George Goodwin, who went to the drive.

The mayor's statement also said the city could lose the ability to govern themselves and businesses could lose their licenses if phase two laws are not enforced. For instance, those with the city said people were not practicing social distancing during the drives, because they would congregate on the sidewalk. "In between the threats and the intimidation I'm kind of surprised there's this many people out here, because they were pretty threatening about it... Also they're making a statement, they disagree with what's going on, and I agree with them," said the Owner of the Skyline Theater, Chuck James.

Many at the drive on April 24 said it was not a protest, and was a way to show solidarity with local business owners. However, at the drive on May 1, participants said it was also about their constitutional rights. "I'm more concerned with my losing my freedom than I am with catching the virus," said Jerry Canterbury, who has lived in Fremont County for more than 80 years.

Those at the drive also said the laws of the state do not fit Fremont County, which has seen a small number of COVID-19 cases when compared to their population size. "I am all for the safety of everyone and this is certainly uncertain times, but I think it's majorly overblown," said Colby Katchmar, a co-owner of Pizza Madness on Main Street.

There was a police presence at the event, like last week, but News5 did not see anyone get ticketed for congregating on the sidewalk.

News5 also interviewed the mayor and a county commissioner on Thursday of this week about the drives. To learn more about the controversy surrounding these cruises, visit this article:
Cañon City cruise drives divide in community

Previous Reporting:
Canon City cruise in support of small businesses