Vandalism at the Town Beach
By Patricia Roy
In what’s become an unwelcome rite of summer, trash cans were toppled and garbage strewn around at Stoddard Park and the Pleasant Point on Lake Winthrop in July.
Public and private and private boats were stolen, playground equipment defaced and watermelons smashed on picnic tables “They’ve done it in the past with things from time to time, but this was probably the first time this season,” Town Administrator Travis Ahern said.
He wanted to make residents aware this was happening and while the damage was not extensive, it is a pain in the neck for Parks and Recreation employees who get stuck with the clean-up and shows a lack of respect for the community, he said.
The plan is to have police stop by to take a look when Parks employees are not there, he said.
“We do have cameras in there, so we’re obviously going to be checking those as well to see who’s causing the issue,” Ahern said, but making no guesses himself as to whom the culprits may be.
“Nothing was permanently ruined, but obviously, this is not how we want our Parks people to be spending their time,” he said.
Each summer, the Parks and Recreation Department runs Camp Patoma at Stoddard Park using the lake for water activities and swimming lessons. This includes a roped off swimming area, playground, picnic tables and portable restrooms during the summer.
Elsewhere on the lake, Stoddard Park also includes a swimming area, playground, covered pavilion, picnic tables, two volleyball courts and restrooms. Lifeguards staff the beach during operating hours.
During daylight hours Pleasure Point is accessible to residents only and Stoddard Park can be used by residents and non-residents who have paid for day passes.