MRIBA took action, not one couple

The board of directors for the Mount Rainier Independent Business Alliance would like to correct some facts that were alleged in the letter printed by Randy Martin (Courier-Herald, Oct. 14).

In his letter he made the claim that Chuck and Celia Bender took away the “traditional light parade” with “no discussions with participants…committee members and businesses.”

This is simply not true.

Our organization has scheduled several public meetings as well as spoken with the mayor, members of the city council and all of our membership regarding this parade and festival. This was in no way a “unilateral” decision made by the Benders. Our membership voted and was unanimous in the decision on the final vote to move forward with the current format. The Benders themselves were originally split on the idea to move the parade time. In fact, Celia Bender, the event coordinator, was initially in favor of the original evening schedule.

We want to reiterate what has been stated repeatedly: MRIBA did not seek out this event but was approached to sponsor it. Had we not taken the reins, there would be no parade at all this year. The MRIBA will not make any profit from this event and may, in fact, lose money in producing this free community event.

Anyone who knows the Benders will testify that they work tirelessly for this community and all of its members. As a board we are thankful that Celia Bender is willing to volunteer her time, without compensation, to help us create an event the community can be proud of.

Jeff Schweter

Membership director


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 500 words or less.

More in Letters to the Editor

Thank you for your excellent customer service

Les Schwab came to my home to help me, because I could drive to them.

A note from the publisher

We’ve lifted online paywalls on our sites so our community can stay informed.

A letter from the Black Diamond City Council

City offices are closed, but we are working on a way to hold virtual council meetings.

How our our grocery stores protecting us from COVID-19?

They have some protections — but is it enough?

Elfers’ opinion on Trump saga are based on fact

Don’t make assertions you can’t back up.

Support AVID, vote ‘yes’ on White River district levy

AVID and other programs rely on taxpayer money to give students the best possible education.

Support Enumclaw School District’s tech levy

Having access to technology greatly improves my education.

Vote ‘no’ on Enumclaw School District’s tech levy

The district has enough money — don’t give them more.

All should be free to express their opinion

A newspaper shouldn’t censor.

Thanks to all who made Guild fundraiser a success

It was a sold-out event, thanks to everyone’s efforts.

Thanks to everyone for your support

The Buckley community helped us in these hard times.

Alternative opinions on impeachment

I think the only reason Biden is running for president is because he knew he’d be investigated.