The reason a community park places a picnic table is to serve as an invitation; it tells the passers-by that they are welcome to stop, place a tablecloth and enjoy the ambience. The reason Avila Beach has the Bob Jones bike path, the Aquatic Center and concert events at the golf resort is to invite those who would escape for a day or two from their home community.
Granted, when it is crowded out here, there is less parking and longer lines for those who live and work here. But we understand that this influx of tourists is the community’s lifeblood, and it funds the maintenance of parks and clean beaches. We know that without the revenue such events generate, our community could have become similar to the coastal communities that have a seedy aspect — natural beauty coupled with dilapidation. One doesn’t have to look far to find examples.
An event such as the Tour of California attracts cyclists and cycling fans from around the world. Sponsors of such events are well aware of the demographics, catering to a population who are of the upper income level, travel, are well educated, use computers and the Web, are often entrepreneurial and are heath conscious and physically active. In other words, we could not pick better “tourists.”
This is an opportunity for Avila Beach.