Dear Mr/Ms Editor,
This article is a disgrace and the editorial, reporting, and fact-checking staff should be ashamed of themselves. At best this article is inaccurate and at worst it’s insulting.
First and foremost the Cutthroats weren’t just participants in the events. The Cutthroat Bicycle Club were and have been the primary organizers of the events and to not credit them as such is a slight to their hard work, dedication, and strong ties to both the business and social communities of Richmond. These are the guys (and girls) who keep the gears running smoothly and they’ve been doing so for 7 years.
Second, you seem to claim that the majority of the events which occur involve, or are based around drinking. You use the words “drunk” or “drunken” four times in this article and imply that the participants as nothing more than a bunch of drunken goons and the event itself is nothing more than a crazed bacchanal. Even more so you make these implications based only on observing one day (out of four) of events. This is a horrible misrepresentation of both the substance and spirit of Slaughterama and I’m surprised that you’d so badmouth a community who invited you in with open arms.
It seems to me like the problem here is that your staff didn’t come to the event to participate or to cheer on your friends who were participating. Nor does it seem like you came to talk to the participants or the organizers, because many of the problems with this article could have been fixed after only a short talk with either. It seems to me like you showed up for the same reason that an unfortunately large number of people showed up this year. You heard there was going to be a big party on Belle Island and incidentally there would be kids on bikes there. It was this attitude which lead to the disappointment you mentioned at the end of the article and the same attitude that lead to a lot of disrespectful and in some cases dangerous behavior, much of which was perpetrated by people entirely uninvolved in the actual events of the day.
Certainly if one happens to drink a beer or twelve at Slaughterama it’s not a big deal, hey, it happens. Same with if you get hit with / throw an empty beer can at one of the opposing teams. However, at it’s very heart Slaughterama has always been about getting together with friends and having fun on bikes. It seemed to me and a lot of others that a lot of people who came to Belle Island on this year didn’t understand that.
A Concerned Denizen
P.S. How can your seriously print material like what you got from Dan Sides. “Wind-Up Bird Ruff Ryders Crew”? Really? The whole thing is so drenched in sarcasm that it practically drips off the page. On top of that the quote barely makes any sense.
I wouldn’t be surprised at all if there were no events at Belle Island next year.