Cruise operator’s greed imperils local tradition

Hornblower Cruises’ attempt to block the iconic Maid of the Mist from continuing its operations on the American side of the falls via the use of the Niagara Preservation Coalition as a front man in court is pathetic. It is yet another example of corporate greed and a corporation looking to make as much money as possible without regard to local history and tradition.

The recent News article highlighting the lawsuit filed by the Niagara Preservation Coalition is very interesting. After reading it, and questioning why lawyers representing the coalition would meet with a lawyer representing Hornblower after they filed a motion to bar the Maid of the Mist from continuing its construction of facilities on the American side of the falls, I found out two very interesting things. 1) If you go to the Hornblower Cruises website, there is virtually no way to contact any level of management. If you click “Contact Us” you are directed only to the email contacts for the individual cruise locations. 2) There is apparently no way to contact the Niagara Preservation Coalition. I did an Internet search and the only references I could find were linked to The News article and an article in Artvoice. I also was unable to find contact information for Louis Ricciuti, who heads the coalition. If it is a legitimate group, why does it not have a website or, at very least, a physical address with a phone number that shows up in an Internet search?

This is yet another example of narrow-mindedness and pettiness by a few that continues to hold back our region from progressing. A corporation is seeking larger profits so it invokes a shadow organization that delays progress and ultimately costs the public more tax dollars. Pathetic.

For the record, I did send an email to Hornblower through its San Francisco link, but I have not heard back. Big surprise.

Kristopher Pendrak

North Tonawanda