After recent acts of vandalism to park benches and infrastructure, township officials are proposing a change to park hours for Cinnaminson’s seven parks.
Under a new ordinance, the parks would be closed from dusk until dawn unless an event is going on at one of the parks.
“The reality is we’ve had several problems with some of our new investments,” said Mayor Don Brauckmann, also the director of parks and recreation. “It’s when the lights go off, the kids are still hanging out there.”
Last fall, graffiti was found on the ladies room wall of the new bathroom and concession stand at Wood Park, weeks after it opened. Recently, Brauckmann said picnic tables have been burned, litter has been a problem and shrubbery has been destroyed.
Two of four rims at Wood Park were taken down last week after courts were left a mess over the weekend.
“With this in mind, there was a suggestion to amend the park hours to be closed from dusk to dawn and to be more specific regarding prohibited acts,” Brauckmann said.
He said the bulk of the issues is happening after hours, mostly late at night.
After-hours sports games and township-sponsored events will still go on as planned and the park will close a half-hour after the event ends.
Cinnaminson Police are continuing their patrols, sometimes up to four times a day, Brauckmann said.
“The police are doing an outstanding job,” he said. “The parks are definitely getting a lot of documented police attention.”
Brauckmann said the parks and recreation advisory committee is on board with the change in park hours. The idea to change the park hours came from parks and recreation and public works officials who are in charge of upkeep and maintenance of the parks.
The second reading and public hearing of the park hours ordinance will be on April 16.