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Post-Snirt meeting gets positive remarks, sets later date for next year’s run

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LOWVILLE — A post-Snirt Run meeting held Wednesday by Lewis County legislators generated positive comments and constructive criticism from involved parties, even as written public comments echoed the sentiment.

“Far and away the biggest issue was Mother Nature and the snow,” said Legislator Lawrence L. Dolhof, chairman of the Economic Development Committee. To alleviate any weather-related issues next year, the event has been moved from the second to the third Saturday in April.

During the preparation for the one-day all-terrain vehicle poker run, committee members planned a post-event meeting to assess the requirements placed on event organizers.

Mr. Dolhof noted nearly 3,000 ATV operators registered for the event. With many ATVs carrying two riders, he estimated the attendance at 5,000.

“Overall, it was a great success,” he said, though several property-damage complaints resulted from operators who strayed from the event’s course. The damage has been documented and is said to be an open issue. “They’ll address issues in a timely manner,” Mr. Dolhof said of event organizers, who agreed to fix any damage as a condition for hosting the event. “We need to give them time to assess how much is actual Snirt damage.”

The county will monitor the progress of repairs.

Mr. Dolhof asked business owners, law enforcement officials and organizers to comment on specific items that were laid out in the contract between the county and event organizers Barnes Corners Sno-Pals.

Better signs were posted. “It was a very big help,” Lewis County Sheriff Michael P. Carpinelli said. “They did a good job with it.”

Clearly marked barriers also were mandatory this year. “They can’t be put out after” the start of the run, said John P. DeGuardia, owner of Timberview Resort in Houseville.

Organizers placed barrels indicating ATVs should not pass through at both ends of Tabolt Road, which was covered in deep snow — but only after participants had come through, Mr. DeGuardia said. He said ATV operators later found the road blocked when they tried to return.

“That’s what pushed them off route,” he said. Damage to the adjacent property was estimated at $9,522.

Next year’s Snirt Run is set for Saturday, April 18.

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