Safety concerns may scrap Small Ships Revue

SHARON, Pa. (WKBN) — Sharon’s annual Small Ships Revue, which has taken place in downtown Sharon for the past 33 years, may start to sink.

City leaders sent a letter to event sponsor Quaker Steak and Lube addressing drastic changes that need to be made for safety reasons. During a meeting Thursday between Sharon officials and restaurant representatives, tempers flared and resulted in a heated argument between Quaker Steak Chief Financial Officer Fred Dreiholz and Sharon City Council President Ed Palanski.

Among the requested changes is floats no longer will be allowed in the river and there will be no parade in the street before the event. Dreiholz said the changes will have a direct impact on this event and other events, like the upcoming WaterFire Sharon.

“We are very big in terms of providing back to the community, so it’s a significant blow to us,” Dreiholz said.

But Palanski said there is no correlation between the Small Ships Revue and WaterFire Sharon.

And despite Palanski speaking highly of the restaurant, saying they are good neighbors and good business people, he accused Dreiholz of not understanding the city’s position on the safety issue, saying the police department has difficulty controlling the large, often rowdy, crowd that accompanies Small Ships Revue.

Dreiholz said the city is not being cooperative and is unwilling to work with them on a solution.

Quaker Steak and Lube plans a meeting Friday to discuss more in-depth about what changes will be made for this year’s event.

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