Friday, July 25, 2008

Officials in Kannapolis rush to defend removal of 'worn and dirty' flags

Not long after my previous blog about the “Dale Trail” banners being yanked down in Kannapolis got posted, I got an e-mail from John Cox, the president and chief executive officer of the Cabarrus Regional Partnership.

Cox sent along a copy of an e-mail sent by Kannapolis city manager Mike Legg in which Legg says banners honoring the late Dale Earnhardt aren’t coming down because David Murdock wants to show his North Carolina Research Center to some “important” visitor this weekend and doesn’t think NASCAR-themed banners are a good match for the new science research park project.

Legg called a story about the banners in The Salisbury Post and other reports about the matter “inaccurate or incomplete.” Cox sent a copy of an e-mail Legg sent to a Kannapolis citizen trying to clear things up.

“Let me assure you, the City of Kannapolis has absolutely no desire or plans to change our ongoing commitment to honoring Dale Earnhardt and his legacy,” Legg wrote. He said the city council put $25,000 in this year’s budget to enhance the plaza where a statue honoring Earnhardt stands.

Legg said that the “Dale Trail” banners were removed “because they were worn and dirty and the CVB (Cabarrus Convention and Visitors Bureau) believed that they needed a fresh look.”

Legg said there are plans to “enhance” the Dale Trail in Cabarrus County and Kannapolis.

“Thoughts are to include a driving CD taking people to all the points of interest along the Dale Trail,” he wrote. “Also thoughts are being discussed of installing attractive informational markers at key interest points (Ralph Earnhardt's grave, the D.E. Plaza, etc.). There is also the possibility or a new Dale/NASCAR banners being created to honor the sport and the legacy of Dale. This notion of the banners being removed permanently is simply false information.”

I told Cox that it seems like a convenient coincidence that the decision was made to “freshen” the banners right after emails exchanged this week about the banners in relation to Murdock’s weekend plans.

And if Earnhardt’s hometown is going to honor his memory with new banners, maybe next time Kannapolis shouldn’t let them get so “worn and dirty” they need to be taken down all at once.

Maybe the new research center can someday develop a fabric that won’t get worn and dirty as quickly and everybody will have a nice synergy to talk about.

“Even though we are certainly proud of the changes going on in the City of Kannapolis and our new and exciting future, we are in no way abandoning our history and heritage,” Legg wrote.

“On the contrary, we continue to search for ways to enhance the preservation of our past as well as improve our future.”

50 comments:

Anonymous said...

When you bring Billionaire Clients to town, I agree that the city needs to put on it's "best suit". If things are dirty, then they should be taken down and plan to replace them be underway at the same time.

You wouldn't show up at a wedding in a dirty suit, therefore when a billionare investor comes to town, you also want to look to impress.

Anonymous said...

With a statue and a Blvd for Dale Sr, I don't think taking down some dirty banners as disrespectful. It would prove to be more disrepectful to allow tathered and weathered banners hang.

Anonymous said...

Living in Concord, I realize that these billionaires get what they want. Bruton Smith Blvd?!....Guess what? If Kannapolis is not careful it will be Murdock Blvd and not Dale Earnhardt Blvd. The city of Concord did a real nice job of messing that whole situation up.

blpadge2 said...

I posted this on another blog post, but I have to say it again here.

Since Murdock imploded Cannon Mills, heaven forbid the most famous linthead get any extra public exposure.

Really what we are dealing with is massive egos. Murdock is a billionaire who bought what was the biggest industry in town. Okra is the biggest, richest black woman in America who has taken a nothing junior Senator and like he is an item on her favorite things list made him #1 in America. Heaven forbid either on of them be upstaged by a 9th grade dropout who was merely a millionaire.

Orange Chuck said...

David Poole, you hit the nail right on the head. I find it quite ironic that because some are dirty and ragged that ALL of them come down at once. I think thats a PR answer when they found out how much publicity the whole deal was getting. I posted my own views on this subject on my blog as well but it's great to see someone with your stature stand up for them as well. Murdock has done a lot of great things for this area but so have the Earnhardt family. I heard on WFNZ, Ms. Safrit who works for Murdock basically slinging the same crap and it all sounded like PR, save our butts lines to me.

Anonymous said...

This statement by this official requires no more eloquent of a response than raising a big, brand new, clean and untattered BULLSHIT flag.

Anonymous said...

The best way to get the point across would be for everyone in town to wear their Dale T-shirts on that day.

Anonymous said...

It is a disgrace to take those memorials down he made that town!!! Its Bull!!! Some uppity californian he can go back to cali and stick it where the sun dont shine!! This IS NC Nascar Country!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

This sounds like nothing but spin to me. I, for one, will be boycotting Murdock's company - Dole Foods and I suggest that others do the same.

Anonymous said...

Hey, you can put lipstick on a pig, but it's still a pig, and I mean that in the most respectful way. We are Earnhardt country, proud and loud. Take down the banners for some high-handed big money executive? If you don't like it, take your money home. Dale would not have knelt in your presence, and neither will we.

stupid rednecks said...

Whatever. If it weren't for Murdock Kannapolis would be a dying town. You should be thanking this Californian for investing in your community!

kannapolis native said...

I look foward to the day this town is no longer a haven for rednecks and white trash. The sad part is you would rather this town suffer than change for the better. Dale should be remembered, but he didn't make this town and it is time to move on to bigger and better things.

Anonymous said...

You do not have to erase the past to embrace the future. The two can co-exist and all be respectful as well as profitable. Kannapolis is a "haven for rednecks and white trash" in your opinion? Sounds to me like YOU need to move.

Anonymous said...

Nobody knows where Kannapolis is unless your from NC. Dale did not put this town on the map. This research center has the potential to do so.

Anonymous said...

"Kannapolis is a "haven for rednecks and white trash" in your opinion? Sounds to me like YOU need to move."

Yes, it is and I think you need a reality check.

uh, ok... said...

"Hey, you can put lipstick on a pig, but it's still a pig, and I mean that in the most respectful way."

Wow, so your proud to be a bunch of "pigs"??? I'm sorry...

Anonymous said...

Really? Let me put that on my list of things to do. Honest, it will go right to the top. Reality check. Got it.

Look, I'm just saying the two can co-exist! The history of stock car racing was born in and around this area and in these mountains and is nothing to be ashamed of. There is no need to "bleach" Kannapolis of its history to ensure some possible future in biotech. Just my opinion.

Anonymous said...

I agree that the two can work together. Our future is in the hands of Murdock right now. Kannapolis has NOTHING going for it other than this research park. We need this to succeed and if that means cleaning and changing things up and bit than so be it! The memorial isn't going anywhere and neither are all the motorsport companies in the area.

Anonymous said...

I'd rather be with the pigs who have history and a town they're proud of, history and all, than with a bunch of clean sheep from out of town following the herd to "success" by destroying the past.

Find another town. This one ain't for sale.

see ya wouldn't wanna be ya... said...

Too late you pig redneck. This town is bought out and your either gonna have to adapt or move on.

little miss piggy said...

"I'd rather be with the pigs who have history and a town they're proud of, history and all, than with a bunch of clean sheep from out of town following the herd to "success" by destroying the past.

Find another town. This one ain't for sale."

People like you are depressing. You have no aspirations in life. Major employers have closed down and moved out leaving us with nothing. If it weren't for an "outsider", this town would be the pits. Things can't stay the same forever and this town WILL change. You can open your mind and hop on board or you can get left behind.

Anonymous said...

My opinion differs from yours so I'm a pig redneck and little miss piggy, depressing with no aspirations.

Thank you, but I think I'll stick with my own thoughts and opinions, and you are welcome to your own.

Anonymous said...

Your a loser (or just old and set in your ways) and I'm suprised Murdock even bothered with this loser redneck town.

Anonymous said...

Obviously with things like the new wind tunnel, science and Nascar can work together. I really don't see the big deal. It is just some old banners around town. The statue and memorial aren't going anywhere. Get over it.

oink oink said...

This just sounds like a case of jealousy. Maybe if you rednecks had some aspirations in life, you could make some money too. It isn't other peoples fault your dumb and poor. Your just scared of things like wealth and change. BOO HOO.

stop crying said...

IT IS JUST A DAMN BANNER! IT ISN'T LIKE THEY ARE DEMOLISHING THE STATUE, MEMORIAL, OR MUSEUMS. GET A LIFE AND MOVE ON!

Anonymous said...

For all of you who don't understand reading comprehension or don't know your history of the trail, you should know how Murdock was instrumental in putting those banners up in the first place. He feels that there really isn’t much of an attraction to it anymore. Kannapolis has never done anything except try to exploit the Earnhardt name. Murdock wanted the tribute, thinking it would bring a lot of business to Cannon Village and it never worked. People come and take pictures at the statue and go on to DEI. The banners need to be changed. It really isn't a big deal. The statue and everything else will remain.

Anonymous said...

If earnhardt "made" and loved Kannapolis so much, then why didn't he build his multi million dollar race complex, multi million dollar homestead, and massive chevy dealership elsewhere?

Cannon Mills made Kannapolis.

Anonymous said...

If the flags were starting to look like some of the American Flags I have seen flying around the area, ragged and worn, then yes they should be taken down. Then auctioned on Ebay with ALL the money going towards Dales charities!!!

It would be nice to have another set of weather resistant signs put up so that the Trail can continue, but remember that someone has to pay for it.

I dont think that some moneybag fancy pants should dictate what a town does to honor its citizens, the people should have that say.

Signed,
Just yet another proud Southern Redneck

Annoyed by Ignorance said...

"Your a loser (or just old and set in your ways) and I'm suprised Murdock even bothered with this loser redneck town."

Dude, if you're the same person who posted several times above, you're the ignorant one. "Your" is a possessive pronoun, "you're" is a contraction for "you are," as in, "Your opinion is welcome if you're not a moron."

I'm looking forward to the show- down between Mr. Smith and Mr. Murdock. Will the county implode?

Anonymous said...

The poster "stupid rednecks" must be Murdock or one of his lackeys.

I seriously doubt that this new research center is going to help the majority of the people in Kannapolis. I hope the people of Kannapolis aren't foolish enough to believe that Murdock is trying to help them. Murdock is in Kannapolis because he can buy cheap property and hire cheap labor to build his new research center. It's all about the dollar.

When Canon Mills closed it left a lot of blue-collar folks out of work. With the exception of construction crews, a few secretaries and maintenance workers, the Bio-tech research center is NOT going to be hiring people from Kannapolis.

They will bring in scientists from other areas. Housing will go up to match the salaries of the scientists and many Kannapolis natives will be priced out of their own town.

The only people this project will help is Murdock, the greedy Kannapolis gov't officials and the few wealthy people in town. Everyone else will be left in the dust.

Anonymous said...

Although I'm not one who worships at the Earnhardt Shrine (I'm not a NASCAR fan, either), I see nothing wrong with Kannapolis honoring a favorite son. But if you're going to do it, at least do it right. Don't let the displays become trashy, worn out, and tacky looking.

Face facts, too. Kannapolis is a nice little town, but it was in a state of decline until Murdock came along. Other than his name and fame, Dale Earnhardt contributed little, if anything, to the town's growth and profit.

Anonymous said...

It won't help Kannapolis residents because most of them don't have any education and from the looks of some of these posts, they seem to be proud of that! Nobody can help you if you can't even help yourselves. Stop aspiring to be a bunch of blue-collar rednecks and maybe you will see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Anonymous said...

I love when people resort to trivial grammar issues as "comebacks". It is called a typo. I am glad you atleast learned something while you were in school in Kannapolis. Atleast you didn't drop out of high school like Dale did! What a hometown hero he is!

Anonymous said...

Nothing "made" Kannapolis. Nobody could give two craps about that town until now. The research center will put Kannapolis on the map. However, to be fair to all the factory workers who refuse to get an education to help themselves, the county should try to recruit someplace these people can work at.

Anonymous said...

IAM A JEFF GORDON FAN FOR LIFE BUT SOME JERK FROM CALIF. THAT HAS A LOT OF MONEY AND DOES'T LIKE NASCAR THINKS TAKING FLAGS DOWN OF DALE SR IS A GOOD THING ITS ALL ABOUT MONEY I LIFE IN CALIF. AND AM POOR BUT I STILL LOVE MY NASCAR BUT BECASE I LIKE NASCAR I GUSS IAM DUMB TO 24 FAN FOR EVER

hur hur dur what? said...

"AND AM POOR BUT I STILL LOVE MY NASCAR BUT BECASE I LIKE NASCAR I GUSS IAM DUMB TO 24 FAN FOR EVER"

Yeah, you pretty much are. I'm sorry.

Anonymous said...

Take the flags, the freakin statue, and the race track. I am sickened every time I see a Bruton Smith Blvd sign as it is a reminder of inept leadership and "boss hog" like politics that has left the taxpayers paying for Mr. Smith's greed. "Cain't build my dragracer! I'll show dem buh gawd"! My left testicle has more honor and integrity than the either party of the "speedway showdown".
Mr. Murdock brings opportunity and enrichment to this area by building a research center designed for improving the health and welfare of humans. Dale Earnhardt drove a car in circles.
Unfortunately, this area thrives on the racin track. Several times a year, I have to barricade my home as droves of fans come into town to buy up all of the Hooter wings, convenient store Budweiser and sell out the hotels. This area has an opportunity to change its identity and should embrace the requests of Mr. Murdock.

Anonymous said...

First it was the Cannons running the town like their own little fiefdom, now it's Mr. Murdock. Guys, you just replaced one tyrant who exploits people with another tyrant that exploits people. Great job!

cali rules! said...

California girls are a lot hotter! You should bring some over here with you Murdock!

Anonymous said...

Earnhardt was a high school dropout who drove a car around in circles. Oh yeah, wanna be just like him... not.

Anonymous said...

This is stupid bull----,to be arguing about. The only thing Earnhardt ever done for Kannapolis or Cabarrus County was owe everyone out his butt for year's.Like someone else on here said he built his home and racing shop's in Iredell County why because everyone in Cabarrus Co. knew him and knew him well. Think about it people Earnhardt was from this area but it took Jeff Gordon to build a Children's Hospital in Cabarrus Co. in Concord, N.C..To me people that speak's volumes.

blpadge2 said...

anonymous said, "This is stupid bull----,to be arguing about. The only thing Earnhardt ever done for Kannapolis or Cabarrus County was owe everyone out his butt for year's.Like someone else on here said he built his home and racing shop's in Iredell County why because everyone in Cabarrus Co. knew him and knew him well. Think about it people Earnhardt was from this area but it took Jeff Gordon to build a Children's Hospital in Cabarrus Co. in Concord, N.C..To me people that speak's volumes."

Yeah and judging by the vitriol on this board, how many folks in Cabarrus County treated him as a greasy linthead dropout destined to always borrow money on Friday hoping to win enough to pay it back on Monday will driving $100 beaters for a family car. I bet a lotta folks around Kannapolis had to eat crow when he became rich and famous. Hell, if I had been him I'd made a beeline out of there over to Lake Norman too.

Rodney King said...

"Can't We ALL Just Get Along"
The reality is the city of Kannapolis could not forget Dale Earnhardt even if it tried. He is a part of the peoples history there. He is legendary and legends don't die they are remembered forever.

With or without banners.

blpadge2 said...

So the mystery visitor was Martha Stewart. All this fuss for a convicted criminal. At least Junior Johnson managed to get a presidential pardon.

Anonymous said...

What a sad state of affairs when so much time and energy is spent on such a trivial incident.

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