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posted September 7, 2001

Vandalism in the park:

This has been another year of very little vandalism in the park, with one exception the area by the wading pool and the playground. The bulletin board was knocked over, the checker table trampled, the locks on the rain shelter benches twisted and broken, and there was lots of broken glass. (Much of the damage was repaired by playground volunteer Fidel Perez with the help of the summer staff.)

It turned out that a new group of young (Portuguese and Spanish?) drinkers had established themselves beside the wading pool this summer, and even though they were rather pleasant when sober, they constantly did stupid things when they drank too much (which was often). Despite four or five talks with them, there was no lessening of the damage. Then one morning the staff had to spend an hour and a half carefully picking up broken glass at the side of the wading pool. That was the last straw.

Late that night, Jutta Mason went to the playground and asked about thirty young fellows, in three different groups, to get up and leave the playground area and never party there any more, not one more time. To her surprise, they all got up and moved elsewhere in the park. In the following week they returned only twice, and although they argued each time, they got up and left when asked. <b>The rule now is, in Dufferin Grove Park, nobody parties in the playground, period</b>. If you're sitting in the playground with your friends and there's even one bottle, you move elsewhere in the park.

If anyone sees this rule being broken, please remind the young people and ask them to move to elsewhere in the park. Chances are, they will. If they refuse, please leave a message on the rink house phone to report

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