We read in horror of the proposals for Gilroy Gardens. It was a sanctuary for us and our now 10-year-old. She learned about trees and about the natural world that surrounds her. She got to ride a mushroom, twirl in a strawberry and wait in line for her favorite: the floating flowers that cruised near the little lake that was strewn with ride-able ducks. It was peaceful.
We are a family who despises Disneyland because of the crowds, the noise and the constant intense bustle. All of the proposals mentioned in your piece promise just that. Making Gilroy a “Destination” spot is something that we never envisioned when we bought our house here 13 years ago. We love that we can buy our food directly from the farmers in Gilroy. I’m sure that we have the only drive-in egg farmer in the county! We support our favorite vintner here. We love Gilroy Antiques, and look there for special gifts. The vacuum store, Littlejohn’s, O.D.’s, the bowling alley. All unique to our quirky little town.
Bit by bit, however, Gilroy’s representatives are selling off our farmland for mega houses and development, and they call it progress. They are selling off the very things that attracted us to Gilroy. Now Gilroy Gardens. The hometown feel of this place is something rare.
Gilroy Gardens is a gem that my family has enjoyed for over a decade. It celebrates who we are as a community, and provides an opportunity to learn and have fun at the same time. It provided first jobs to many Gilroy high school students, here, not to mention the local community.
Expanding it to just another amusement park might help the corporations who plan to buy it, but I fail to see the benefit to us. I see the planned sale to the corporations not unlike the previous sale of huge lots here for mega homes. More tax revenue, perhaps, at the cost of ruining the treasures that we already have. To us, it feels like “we’re paving paradise to put up a parking lot.”