Mea Culpa, Mea Culpa, Mr. Jack Goggin, Mea Maxima Culpa!
A part of another around-the-lake world opened up to the staff of the Geneva Shore Report recently. It surfaced due to the controversy surrounding the coming of the Muck-Suck Marathon Race on May 28th (if that race actually takes place). This ‘new world’ of really neat people remains fairly invisible for most of the year, because almost all of them winter in Florida. Without fail, they are also lake front property owners and members of the Geneva Lake Association.
They appeared because of their reading about the coming lake shore path race (amazingly a good number of them read the GSR all the way down in Florida!). When they received the May 3rd issue titled, “The Idiotic Human Steeplechase,” with the shore path rules sign on the cover and the underlying message “attention, owner of these signs, please be aware the shore path is under assault and requires your immediate assistance,” this new world of around-the-lake owners and GLA members went ballistic and started emailing and calling each other. They quickly decided to attempt to put a stop to the coming event on the delicate shore path.
The shore path around Lake Geneva is actually not truly owned, even though it crosses owned land. It’s a ‘prescriptive easement’ upheld by the courts, but an easement that is almost impossible to establish rules for, or on. The GLA staked its claim to the small two-foot wide strip of territory all around Geneva Lake back in 1935, when it erected signs at over 20 locations around the lake, displaying rules of conduct for walkers, or other users of the path. In addition, the GLA pledged to defend and protect this “prime jewel” as one of the main objectives of its publicized mission statement. The first to call the GSR in response to the race article was a charming man named Don Taylor. He assured the staff of the GSR that the GLA would be on it in setting about stopping the Muck-Suck Race because the GLA cavalry had been alerted and was on its way. There was a problem, however, impeding that support. Most of the property owners the path crosses were thirteen hundred miles away in Florida. The GSR was told to hold the fort while Don got the message out. A short time later, the staff read the “Condemnation Decree” issued by the President of the GLA, Jack Goggin. The letter seemed like a tepid response to a serious problem, or at least, so it seemed. There was no way to know that any other planning or work was underway to stop the race, and court action, with money raised to pay the necessary attorneys, had become the only recourse, or the race would simply go on without material opposition. Worried that neither the home owners nor the GLA would take serious action, the Geneva Shore Report, in its following edition, figuratively threw a brick thru the GLA office window in the form of comments in last week’s paper. The day after the GSR’s next issue was published and distributed, the staff was invited to attend a special legal meeting at which Jack Goggin announced that the Board of Directors of the GLA had agreed to join the lawsuit/injunction to stop the Muck-Suck Race, and pledged $5000 to that end.
The paper had taken a shot at Jack Goggin, and it was wrong. Jack was working all the time behind the scenes to get distant homeowners organized, committed and also to arrange for their participation in the coming injunctive lawsuit to be filed as this week’s issue of the GSR is being published. On Friday of last week, attorney Ross Anderson, of the Husch Blackwell firm, sent a cease and desist letter to the Muck Suck Race promoters and organizers, demanding they cancel the race or face court action. If the promoters do not back off in a flash then the injunction will be filed by weeks end. Sorry Jack Goggin. You are a good guy and you were not portrayed that way. And the GLA is not a “wuss” organization. The GSR takes that back.
Progress at Starbucks New Location