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Solutions to lax tourney problems will take some time

August 17, 2018
Editorial , Lake Placid News

While Lake Placid is a resort town - a proud one that has hosted millions of visitors from around the world for almost 200 years - this is not Las Vegas. What happens here does not always stay here.

Such was the case when two Texas men in their 20s - staying here to participate in the Lake Placid Summit Lacrosse Tournament two weeks ago - were arrested for allegedly vandalizing flower boxes on Main Street. Their arrest - and what happens next - will be following them back to the Lone Star State.

Lake Placid is a family-friendly tourist town, not a raucous, free-for-all resort with no consequences for bad behavior. Yes, people come here to enjoy themselves, and for many that means going to a party, yet this is not a college town and vacation rentals are not frat houses. More has to be done to get these all-night parties under control.

Local residents are right in saying that many of the lacrosse players are not respecting their hosts when they urinate in public, keep neighbors up all night, trash rental units, vandalize flowers and are just plain rude, especially when driving their cars. And when large groups of badly behaved lacrosse players get together, it does not provide a safe situation for other people around them.

Remember, though, that most of the lacrosse participants are respectful, quiet and are good guests. Like with any large event, there are a few bad apples that ruin things for others. Let's not generalize and say all lacrosse players are badly behaved. This kind of attitude can lead to poor customer service. The lacrosse tournament brings a lot of money into Lake Placid, and we want all our visitors to have a good time and come back.

Lake Placid took a major step toward lessening the vandalism, rowdiness and traffic congestion associated with the Lake Placid Summit Lacrosse Tournament on Friday, Aug. 10 when the Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism hosted a public meeting to discuss some of these problems. We were encouraged to see that ROOST is looking for solutions to these problems, and we are confident they will be found.

Right now, the lacrosse tournament has the same reputation that the Can-Am Rugby Tournament once had in Saranac Lake, with players trashing their lodgings, vandalism, public disorderly conduct, etc. But the rugby tournament has turned that around, and there aren't as many incidents as there used to be. This needs to happen with the lacrosse tournament.

While the tournament organizers have taken steps to reduce the rowdiness of their participants off the field, they can only be successful by working with the community: police, rental owners, village and town officials, and business owners. With their security team, they are doing just that, but it will take some time. Let's work together on this.



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