Cape To Capitalize On Federal Courthouse Disaster

Fake News written by Martha Throebeck on Sunday, March 16, 2008

from the maybe-it-will-see-some-use dept.

CAPE GIRARDEAU -- The towering eyesore on Independence Street -- rumored to be a Federal courthouse -- could make the city a fortune. Tourism officials hope to highlight the courthouse as "America's Biggest Boondoggle" and attract visitors curious to see this pinnacle of Federal incompetence.

In a new advertising campaign, the Missouri Division of Tourism encourages visitors to see their "Federal tax dollars in action -- or inaction." Making fun of the government may seem like a strange choice for a government agency, but Missouri officials think that Cape Girardeau could hit the jackpot.

"Kansas has made a killing with their Largest Ball of Twine and their Deepest Hand-Dug Well," said a state tourism official. "But we've got an actual Wonder of the World: The world wonders what this thing is good for. If this courthouse isn't any good for housing courts, at least we can use it as a tourist attraction."

Several out-of-towners have already been spotted walking around the building, marveling at the estimated 12,534 surveillance cameras and the vandalized C-u-thouse sign. The view at night, featuring interior lighting that can be seen from space, has also attracted some gawkers.

"My God, I can't believe my eyes!" one tourist said while craning his neck, trying to spot the top of the building through the fog above. "I thought the Pyramids in Egypt were a colossal waste of resources, but this one takes the cake. At least the Pyramids were finished."

City officials have mixed feelings about the whole thing. "I really don't want the whole world to know that Cape is a breeding ground for incompetence and waste," said a councilman. "We've got an airport without air service and a fancy four-lane bridge that connects with adult businesses and not much else. That's not the kind of reputation we want. But if it brings in tourists and their wallets, then do we really have much room to complain?"