The evening began with the aldermen hearing from Vienna
Purdue regarding the third annual "Lawnmower Run." Purdue said that
with the city's permission, this year the run is scheduled to take
place on June 23.
The purpose of the run is to collect nonperishable food items
that are then donated to the Lincoln/Logan Food Pantry.
When the mower run was introduced three years ago, it was agreed
that while the mowers would stop at several local bars, there would
be no alcohol consumed until after the route was completed.
Generally, the last stop of the day is at the hosting bar for a
celebration party and silent auction, with those proceeds also going
to the food pantry.
Purdue said that in the last two years, the run has gone very
well, and she anticipates it will continue to do so. This year there
would be a few changes.
The mower run route has always included Mr. Lucky'ss bar, which
is now closed. She said that closure plus the possibility of another
bar choosing not to participate would mean a change in the route the
mowers will take.
She also indicated she might want to add another stop at an
Purdue was asked if she had a copy of the route mapped out to
provide the council. She said she did not, but would get together
with Tracy Jackson of the street department and create that map for
She also said she wanted to find out if the city would object to
having golf carts included in this year's run. She said that in the
past, mower drivers have stopped their vehicles, dismounted and gone
up to houses where food donations are available.
She explained that this holds up traffic and makes the run last
longer than it really needs to. She said if there could be a couple
of golf carts included in the run, the passengers in the carts could
hop off, go get the food and carry it back without anyone actually
needing to stop their vehicle.
Alderwoman Marty Neitzel said she thought the golf carts were a
good idea, and Mayor Keith Snyder said he didn't think anyone would
object to the golf carts if the police chief and city attorney had
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Chief Ken Greenslate and city attorney Blinn Bates both indicated
they had no objection.
Alderwoman Kathy Horn also asked if Purdue had considered asking
the new Wishbone Bar & Grill, located in the basement of the
Veterans of Foreign Wars building, to participate.
Purdue said it had been mentioned, and it would be convenient
because the run already includes Chad's Blind on Fifth Street, which
is very near the Wishbone.
However, she said before she approached the Wishbone, she wanted
to discuss with Greenslate the closing of Fifth Street for the
mowers to cross traffic. Greenslate said he thought that would be
In the past two mower runs, the city street department has
provided barricades at intersections and the run has been treated as
a "rolling parade," in that the street is closed immediately ahead
of the mowers and reopened immediately behind it. The participants
are responsible for blocking the intersections while the mowers pass
through and reopening an intersection when it is clear.
The city police department monitors the rolling parade as a part
of their patrols that day.
At the end of the discussions on Tuesday night, Snyder asked that
Purdue come back with her route mapped out, and once that is done,
the council will add her request to a voting agenda.
[By NILA SMITH]