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Services ended due to lack of support, over use, drug use and crime...consumers now seeking services from neighboring town. Should this be allowed? adult content

Up the street from where I live we have a free water park that offers play area for kids, free meals, a food pantry and other social services. This is one of two that we have in our small town. Most of these services as funded through donations in our community. Today I took my son there for the kids lunch and to play in the water with some of his friends while I and another mother sat under a pavilion and talked as we do most days.

Today however, a church bus from a town twenty minutes away from us arrives with over 20 kids ranging from 7 to 16 years old. The free kids lunch that is offered to our community kids was also given to these kids from the other town. The other kids also played in the water and the jungle gym, even some of the adults were eating free meals and these were supposed to be for the kids only.

As my friend and I were sitting there, a woman from the church informed us that the pavilion was reserved for the church kids only and that we had to move. Not questioning her, we got up and moved our kids to the grass to eat as there were no free tabled now.
As we were sitting there a worker told us that they were working on bringing some chairs out and I asked why the Pavilion was reserved for the church when it has always been reserved for the day camp and kids meal time during this hour. Confused, he said that it was not reserved that it was a first come first serve situation. We were shocked and appalled that a woman who wasn't even from our town told us to move!

I noticed also that some of the other town kids were not allowing our kids to play on the jungle gym, they would push them out of the way and then climb up on it and play and our kids just kind of stood there and looked around like what should they do now. I ended up taking my son and leaving I was so angry.

What really makes me upset is that we have, as I said, 2 places that provides services for low income. This other town is much larger and has about 7 to 10 places they can go. The problem is that due to lack of support and donations those places have run out of food to serve and have cut off the free meals. Also, their local park and pool was closed down about 3 years ago because people were shooting up in the shower rooms, stealing from lockers, disrupting the place and having the police called. The pool was closed twice because people were defecating in the water and the last year it was opened, a 14 yr old girl was raped behind the skate park.

Now these people are coming here to our much smaller town, using our pool and out parks and now they appear to be using our food pantry and free meal programs! I thought that those things were only available to people who were residents of the town in which the services were offered. Now it looks as though they have used up their services and ruined their parks and are now bringing their kids here to use up our resources as well! Seriously, wtf??? I am so upset, this is not fair to our residents and our children. I don't want my kids going to a pool or water park where drugs and crime are likely to be introduced because of people who have no respect for our town or their own obviously, and are too ignorant to know how to act in a public picnic/pool/park area that is mostly for the kids!

Am I over reacting? Would you be upset over this too, or is this just how the world works?
It's a dirty rotten shame that a few bad apples have to ruin things for the rest of us.


Asked by AnonNdrag at 4:07 PM on Jun. 18, 2013 in Entertainment

Level 19 (7,783 Credits)
This question is closed.
Answers (10)
  • I don't know who is allowed to get the lunch. I thought that this was a federal program and if that's the case, I don't know if they can turn down people because they aren't residents. Public parks are usually just public parks, they don't ask for residency. I would make a few requests when talking to your county / city officials. I would ask how the program is funded, who is eligible to receive meals, I would ask that a simple sign be made stating that tables in the pavilion are strictly first come first serve and that reserving tables is not an option. I would ask that there be some kind of local law enforcement supervision of the park due to the issues the other neighboring city has been dealing with. Not that these individuals are guilty of anything, you just want to make sure that things in your park are clean and comfortable for the kids and community. Nothing wrong with following the rules.

    Answer by QuinnMae at 4:45 PM on Jun. 18, 2013

  • Is there a town representative you can talk to?

    Answer by LostSoul88 at 4:14 PM on Jun. 18, 2013

  • I would contact the director of the organization that runs the free meals etc. also call city park, most of the time those places are only for residents of the covering area(sometimes it's county, sometimes city), and people may end up having to prove that they live within the covered area to enjoy the benefits.

    Call and ask and make a complaint.

    Answer by tntmom1027 at 4:22 PM on Jun. 18, 2013

  • I'd start with the church. Contact the minister in charge there and say that you are a regular who lives nearby. Tell how you and your children were treated, including the fact that bigger kids cut in front of them on the jungle gym and that you were asked to leave the pavilion, and also that you saw adults eating the free meals. The church may not be aware of the problems. Also, suggest that if other kids are bussed in from distant churches, more chaperones should be required to accompany them.

    Answer by Ballad at 8:27 PM on Jun. 18, 2013

  • do you have a city hall? Maybe start there.

    Answer by LostSoul88 at 4:18 PM on Jun. 18, 2013

  • I wonder if the church made some sort of donation becasue they were bringing a busload of people?

    Answer by charlotsomtimes at 4:57 PM on Jun. 18, 2013

  • Ugh...this is a sticky situation. If you make a stink out of it, there could be a backlash. That said, I don't blame you for being bummed out about it. Maybe it's just going to be a problem during the summer months? Problem is, there is no way to "govern" this, really. It's not like you can go to neighboring towns and ask support for this particular park. And you can't turn people away from a public park. Next time, you go and play and don't worry about anyone else. But in the meantime, you can contact the head of the Parks and Rec department and explain the situation and see what they say. I don't see an easy way out of this. Your town won't be able to feed everyone. BTW, I've never heard of such a setup. Very nice.

    Answer by jeanclaudia at 8:38 PM on Jun. 18, 2013

  • Honestly I am not sure who to talk to but I am going to be looking into it.

    Comment by AnonNdrag (original poster) at 4:15 PM on Jun. 18, 2013

  • our city hall, court room and sheriffs office is all in the same building so yeah I can probably go there and talk to someone, thank you for the comment :)

    Comment by AnonNdrag (original poster) at 4:20 PM on Jun. 18, 2013

  • The particular water park that we went to is a public venue but it is owned by a church and the money was donated by a wealthy couple who left their estate to the church and it clearly says on their website that the food pantry is for residents of our county only, but not sure about the free meals. I suppose it's possible that the church made a donation in order to be there,still don't mean that they can kick us out of the Pavilion and act rude. But honestly, and I am not trying to be bitchy, but I would find it unlikely that they made a donation because the church is named after the street it's on, it was written on the side of the bus, and I know from having lived in that city that that street is in a very poor, low class area of the city. It's the kind of place you don't walk down the street at night in. Lots of drives bys and crime, I don't know where they'd have the money, but it's possible. I suppose.

    Comment by AnonNdrag (original poster) at 8:19 PM on Jun. 18, 2013