IF KEITH BUSWELL has his way, BMX racing will be coming to Mount Airy.
Buswell is optimistic about plans to construct a dirt BMX racetrack at Mount Airy's Watkins Park as early as spring. The Mount Airy resident recently formed Mount Airy BMX Inc., a nonprofit organization to promote the sport. The organization is sanctioned by the American Bicycle Association.
Buswell is pushing for approval to lease a 2-acre section of Watkins Park from the town. His efforts, he said, are fueled by community interest and support from local residents and bicycle shops in Frederick and Westminster.
According to Buswell, the dirt track would be used for bicycle motocross racing events on Sunday afternoons, 35 weeks a year. The track would be open to the public the rest of the week. Mount Airy BMX Inc. would have liability insurance.
At the town's request, the organization would provide landscaping and a grass infield to keep the site aesthetically pleasing, he said.
The project's estimated cost is $20,000. Buswell said he plans to raise the money through fund-raising and race entry fees.
Buswell, a recreational bicyclist, became interested in the sport when his son, Joshua, became an avid BMX bike fan at age 4. Joshua holds the 1996 Maryland State Championship BMX Racing title for 6-year-olds.
The Mount Airy Elementary School second-grader admits he was a little scared when he first started racing. Now, his favorite part of the races is going over the jumps, especially the "triples" and "tabletop" jumps. Of course, Joshua said, winning is pretty exciting, too.
Buswell is confident that the BMX racetrack will become a reality. The sport encompasses all age brackets, young children to senior citizens.
"We can make it happen," Buswell said. "Mount Airy is a great town, and this is a family organization."
Mount Airy fire prevention
The Mount Airy Volunteer Fire Company and local service organizations will provide fire prevention and safety information to children and parents from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Oct. 17 at the firehouse on North Main Street.
The fire company's annual open house is free. Programs are scheduled throughout the evening to teach children about fire safety and prevention.
Gene Mellin, assistant fire chief and fire prevention chairman, said children's car seat installation checks will be provided by KISS -- Kids In Safety Seats.
Parents can have their children fingerprinted and photographed.
Canine arson-detection demonstrations will be provided by Wayne Shaw and his dog Tipper.
Christy Kruhm's Southwest Neighborhood column appears each Friday in the Carroll County edition of The Sun.
Pub Date: 10/10/97