The council of a town that is arguably more famous in New York City than in Canada has voted to join the Holyrood Stage of the 2010 Targa Newfoundland. The stage will be renamed as the Holyrood Harbour Main Stage.

The town council of Harbour Main – representing the communities of Harbour Main, Lakeview and Chapel’s Cove — approved a four-year contract with Targa this year as the three communities welcomed Targa Newfoundland back to their roads. They were among the first to host Targa stages in earlier years.

Since the turn of the last century many folks from the communities of Harbour Main, Lakeview and Chapel’s Cove have journeyed to work in the city know as “The Big Apple”. Where they went to work is more fascinating than why: They virtually all went to work on high steel as joiners, fitters and erectors for the skyscraper buildings of Manhattan and played a major part in building the city.

The men, seasoned by years at sea in schooners or on the local fishing grounds, took so naturally to high steel work that they became renowned and were so sought-after that they even created their own local of the Steelworkers Union in New York. As time passed more and more people from the Harbour Main area relocated their families to New York. Some of the families have had four generations that have worked high steel.

According to a recent history on the New York high steel aired on CBC Radio by Christopher Brooks, men from the bottom of Conception Bay can actually claim that one of their number “topped” the Chrysler and Empire State buildings in the Thirties, and the World Trade Center in the Seventies. They literally put the roof on what is arguably one of the world’s tallest cities.

The three communities, forming the larger town of Harbour Main, have each retained their individual identities and reside next to Holyrood. Lakeside is inland while Harbour Main and Chapel’s Cove are directly on the sea.

The 12 kilometre long competition stage starting in Holyrood and ending in Avondale will be held on Monday, September 13t, event organizers have announced. The stage will begin in Holyrood and travel along the Conception Bay shore, providing competitors with some of the most scenic vistas in Newfoundland. The stage will be new, and has been designed to set the tone for the first day’s competition for both the Targa and Grand Touring categories.

“We appreciate that these towns are bringing Targa Newfoundland back to their streets, and we wish to thank the mayor and council as well as their staff for the working with us to accomplish this,” said Targa organizer Robert Giannou. “The first stage of the event is very important as it not only starts the competition, but it whets the competitors’ appetite for the event. It also allows them to find a rhythm for the long and sometimes grueling week ahead.”

“Throughout the years, Targa has demonstrated tremendous effort in supporting various charities and this year we are pleased to be associated with them in their partnership with the Newfoundland Autism Society,” said Mayor Raymond Parsley. “In addition, this event will once again add to our local tourism potential in our three communities and surrounding area.”

“We look forward to seeing Targa back in Harbour Main, Lakeview and Chapel’s Cove and we extend an invitation to all the people from the surrounding communities to come and join us at this event,” said the mayor.

Owned and operated by Newfoundland International Motorsports Limited, Targa Newfoundland is one of three internationally recognized Targa motorsports events in the world. The 9th annual Targa Newfoundland will start in St. John’s on Saturday, September 11, 2010, and end back in the capital Saturday, September 18. The competition will cover more than 2,000 kilometres of the challenging, twisty roads of the central and eastern portion of Newfoundland, including up to 450 kilometres of closed-road, flat-out Targa stages.

Competitors have come from the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Holland, Germany, the Bahamas, Turks & Caicos and the U.K. for the first editions of Targa Newfoundland and international interest continues to build with competitors registering daily.

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