I loved the Quiksilver Pro (and wrote about why here). I also loved the buzz that it created and continues to create. Hence why I was so exceedingly disappointed to get news that the QPNY 2012 was called off by Quiksilver CEO Bob McKnight himself.
It seems though, not everyone believes “no means no.” Take U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s (D-NY). She’s written a letter (and issued a press release) directly to Mr. McKnight begging for Quiksilver to reconsider and come back to Long Beach in 2012.
In the letter she says, “over a hundred thousand spectators gathered last summer” in Long Beach and noted the “optimum surf conditions and overwhelming community support.” She goes on to say that Long Beach has “the necessary experience, resources, and infrastructure to help … meet your needs and ensure a successful competition” and asks Mr. McKnight “to reevaluate your decision to not include Long Beach in the 2012 competition.”
Finally, Gillibrand says “I hope that together we can work to put this event back on the schedule”
Kudos to Senator Gillibrand for getting involved in Long Beach and escalating the importance of the Quiksilver Pro to a state issue – which it rightly is. What happens in Long Beach with an event of this size does not just affect our strip of beach, but impacts the Island, New York City, and the state as a whole.
You can already see the difference between the run-up to last year’s event and the run-up to this year’s (non)event. Last time around, out of nowhere a press release came out from City Hall saying, “this is happening, suck it.” (I might be paraphrasing). This time around – even though the event has been canceled – we’ve had community involvement, City Hall discussions, and now a U.S. Senator getting in the mix.
While I would love for the event to come back this year, I don’t see that happening after Quiksilver was burned so badly by the Sofield/Theofan administration the last time around. What I do see though is an amazing event already taking shape for 2013. So, let’s start getting our QPNY 2013 t-shirts and stickers ready to go.
You can read the full press release here
(Hat tip The_Allegria_Sucks for pointing me towards the PR so quick)
If you appreciate Senator Gillibrand’s efforts on behalf of Long Beach, why not drop her a line like user ABee did @ http://gillibrand.senate.gov/contact/