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Kudos to Crystal Lake

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

McHenry County, Illinois Topics:  Viking Dodge

Kudos to Crystal Lake

Gus Philpott
Woodstock Advocate
August 17, 2007

What’s the next chapter in the David vs. Goliath story in Crystal Lake? Remember Wayne, of Wayne vs. Viking Dodge?

Yesterday, August 16, when I drove by Wayne’s favorite parking spot on U.S. 14, there was no place for Wayne to park! You remember, Wayne; right? The guy with the huge anti-Viking Dodge sign on his vehicle, who parks on U.S. 14, just southeast of IL 176, catty-corner from Viking Dodge? The guy whose sign directs passersby to www.ripoffreport.com?) Wayne, who is expressing his constitutional right to free speech?

Viking Dodge figured out how to keep Wayne from parking there. Yesterday morning there was a new white Dodge pick-up truck with a big sign “New Management. New Experience” in the truck bed and two older pick-up trucks, one with a snowblade (really needed in mid-August!) parked there. The two older trucks had used-vehicle lockboxes on the driver’s door handles. Just in case someone wanted to go for a test-drive; right?

It’s illegal to park vehicles in the right-of-way as advertising, so I called the Crystal Lake P.D. The dispatcher explained they were well aware of the problem and working on it, and there was NO hassle about dispatching an officer to talk with me.

While I was waiting for the officer to arrive, I noticed two large, wooden, A-frame signs in the right-of-way along IL 176 in front of Viking Dodge and called Crystal Lake Community Development, where I left a message for the employee who handles sign enforcement.

The officer arrived promptly and explained that the offices of the City Manager and City Attorney were investigating the problem of the Viking Dodge vehicles so parked and of Wayne’s protest.

Later in the day, when I passed again, imagine my surprise to see that all three Viking Dodge vehicles had been removed AND the two signs were gone from in front of Viking Dodge!

Three cheers – no, five cheers – to the City of Crystal Lake for prompt enforcement of violations. No doubt they realize that Viking Dodge pays a lot of sales tax to Crystal Lake, but Crystal Lake took the high road and deserves appreciation! Thanks, too, to Viking Dodge for removing the vehicles and signs.

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