The following is an opinion of The Flint Journal Editorial Board.
Even during Flint’s darkest days, when General Motors was closing plants and downtown businesses were being shuttered, the much respected Crim Festival of Races was able to attract world-class runners from around the country and the globe here to compete.
Well, for the past several years, Flint’s fortunes have been changing for the better. Vision, along with public and private investment, has been paying off. New businesses and loft apartments have opened downtown. Tired building facades have been restored and eyesores such as the crumbling and condemned Genesee Towers have been demolished. Student housing on and around the University of Michigan-Flint campus has ensured a population of consumers remains downtown to help keep businesses afloat after professionals leave at the end of the workday.
No one is claiming that the city doesn’t still face plenty of challenges, but its progress is undeniable. So, it’s fitting that as Flint’s horizons continue expand, so have the Crim’s.
From the original 10-mile race named for Bobby Crim, a former speaker of the House of Representatives, to an entire weekend festival of races offering something for everyone from the casual to the competitive runner, wheelchair racers, racewalkers and children, the event has continued to grow, all while drawing positive attention to our community.
Last spring, the Crim Fitness Foundation added the HealthPlus Tour de Crim, a noncompetitive bike ride along the traditional 10-mile route intended for people of all fitness levels.
On Feb. 22, the Crim will be hosting its first Run Your Ice Off event, a 5K race that starts and ends on the UM-Flint campus. And in July, the Crim will take over running Crossroad Village’s 5K Huckleberry Hustle.
The overall goal is to inspire healthy living and active lifestyles. We wish the Crim well with its expansion efforts. A healthier and more active population benefits everyone.
In the meantime, it’s a huge bonus for Flint that the more people the Crim events attract, especially its flagship event held downtown each summer, the more aware outsiders become of the progress the city has made in its revitalization efforts. Our fortunes are tied together, in this case, for the better.
Original article by MLive. Read More →