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Thursday, October 6, 2022
Letter: Ryerson Park group trying to shift the narrative

Dear editor:

I have appreciated The Lake Report's coverage of the Ryerson Park drama over the past year. It has helped to keep all us locals up-to-date. We are very fortunate to have your newspaper. What a beautiful asset to our small community.

Personally, I have kept quiet about the Friends of Ryerson Park until I saw the articles in last week's paper, where it is now obvious that the “Friends” are trying to shift their narrative and falsify the past.

When I was first approached by the “Friends,” the impassioned speech was about “protecting our park from tourists and those who don't live in Chautauqua” and “taking back our park.”

When they have their small Zoom meetings (60 people tops, not their touted 400+ supporters), the subject is not traffic mitigation and safety. The talk is about dissuading tourists from visiting, changing it so only “Chautauquaers” can park there and limiting use of the park.

Also, they are not an open and public group. They have actively excluded people who live in Chautauqua, but don't immediately agree with the leaders' ideas.

I can't stand by and watch them try to change their narrative, only after they get called out for what they're trying to do.

Full support to Coun. Erwin Wiens. Parks are for everyone. Not just those in the neighbourhood, not just those who live in NOTL or Niagara. Everyone.

Bridgette McLachlin