The Long Lake Parks and Recreation department received notification from the New York State Department of Transportation on Friday, June 25 that the permit for the 4th of July Bed Races to run on route 30 was denied. The 4th of July Bed Races were slated to run on the traditional route, last raced in 1992 from the Long Lake Town Bridge to the Long Lake Town Beach on route 30 at a distance of 2/10’s of a mile .
Town organizers quickly jumped on planning alternatives. The race has now been moved earlier to 5pm. Racers are to meet at the intersection of School Street and Route 30 for a mandatory meeting.
Traditionally as far back as 1982 the Bed Races have been held on the 4th of July on route 30 from the Town Bridge to the Town Beach. The last bed race was held in 1992. In keeping with tradition an effort was made to “bring back the bed races” to build up community spirit, attract tourists and to entertain the crowds amassing at the town beach in celebration of Independence Day. The fire department sets up a BBQ, 4i Band from Binghamton will be playing classic rock and the lifeguards stay on duty well into the evening so families can enjoy the festivities and have a prime seat for the 4th of July fireworks.
The Town of Long Lake had applied for a NYS DOT special permit 33a to host the bed races on the 4th of July. In addition the town had procured special insurance certification, received the support of the Hamilton County Sheriff, the Long Lake Rescue Squad and the New York State Troopers to help with traffic and crowd control. The DOT cited the following reasons for denial:
“There are no reasonable detours for the event, the date and time of the event correspond with times that holiday travelers would be utilizing Route 30 and the event presents safety issues; the potential of individuals being injured is high.”
Organizers will be looking for a suitable location to hold the bed races, aiming to procure permission to do it on School Street into the School Parking Lot off of route 30 and starting the races at 5pm to allow enough time for racers to make their way down to the beach for the evening festivities. Look for updates on #.