Yesterday, I spent three hours as a volunteer bagging trash in B Park. I did this because we are between SMA’s (Seasonal Maintenance Associates), the summer season (funded by PP&R) having ended in October (with an extension to November 12) and the winter season (funded by UCD) having not begun yet. So for two weeks the trash cans have gone untended, and as many people have noticed, they are overflowing. I took the bags in the shed out and moved trash to the curb, putting in new bags, for a dozen or so of the cans around the Tot Lot and the bowl, until I ran out of bags and energy. While doing this I had some thoughts about trash in the park.
First, please remember that everything you leave in a trash can in Clark Park has to be moved to the curb by hand. There are no machines that come in and empty the cans (though the SMA uses a wheelbarrow). In an ideal world we would like park users to take their trash with them, though we know that is unlikely. But there are things you can do to help the situation. If you are throwing away a water bottle, empty it first. The trees need the water more than the trash truck does, and liquids are heavy.
Second, household trash has no place in park trash cans. This applies equally to automotive trash, such as old tires, and to construction debris. The SMA has enough work to do dealing with trash generated in the park, without having to deal with stuff brought in from elsewhere.
Third, if you have a party or a picnic in the park, please bring your own trash bags. Ideally you should take that trash out of the park when you leave, but if you fill them and leave them beside the trash cans it is easy for the SMA to deal with it. But if you put 30 dirty plates and cups into a trash bag, it is filled up and can’t be used by others. So please add trash bags to your shopping list for parties in the park.
Thank you for your continued support of the Friends of Clark Park!