Citizen involvement needed to make city a destination

That's the advice of two leaders to CRC

By Corey Pride / Cpride@losbanosenterprise.comMarch 14, 2013 

The Community Resource Council heard from two political leaders this week, asking for the town's residents to help make Los Banos a better place to live.

Councilman Tom Faria and Councilwoman Deborah Lewis told the group the city needs more attractions and activities.

"One of the challenges in Los Banos is the old Los Banos and the new Los Banos, getting them together to realize we're all a family," Faria said.

He said he'd like to see some organizations band together for fundraising activities. The money could go toward Saturday night events at Henry Miller Plaza, providing Christmas lights during the holiday season, adding more movie nights

Faria said he'd also like to bring businesses downtown that provide recreational activities. He said children have after-school programs and activities available to them in Los Banos, but adults do not have many entertainment choices.

"The kids have a lot of things to do, but there isn't much for families and whatnot," he said.

Councilwoman Deborah Lewis said she believes people are looking for more diversity in activities in town.

"It's not something the city can afford to do, but I'm hoping some of the owners of these buildings will look toward the future and bring a different commodity than some of the things being offered now," Lewis said. "That's what helps build a city, when you can give people a variety."

Lewis said to do what she envisions will take the entire community.

"It's not just a complaint that we don't have anything, but getting that friend or family member, or anyone that has contacts, in touch with the city," she said. "We have to make Los Banos that one destination where everybody wants to stop."

Megan Soares, who moderates the Community Resource Council, said companies assess the city before deciding to bring their business to Los Banos.

"They look to see what kind of community it is -- what kind of economic base, what kind of community support system, do we all work together?" Soares said.

Bonnie Roberts of The Salvation Army said Los Banosans have to support the events and shops that are in the city. She asked Community Resource Council members if they attended A Christmas Evening Downtown in December.

"Out of (all) of us, one was there," she said. "I think people just thought it was you go in a store have a little bite to eat and leave, but I shopped at several places," Roberts said.

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