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July 27, 2009 / Brooklyn news / Park Slope / Meadows of Shame

Here’s why no one likes Mondays — because Prospect Park is a mess, that’s why

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Picnic and barbecue areas of Prospect Park were again filthy on Monday morning.

But unlike last Sunday, when an event-planning company held an illegal party that brought thousands of trash-creating people to the Long Meadow, it’s not as clear who was to blame.

The Parks Department did not deploy enough garbage cans so that there’s enough capacity for all the trash that park users create.

Then again, park workers didn’t dump mounds of garbage all over the place — including an eaten watermelon in a tree pit and barbecue refuse near the band shell and behind the Picnic House.

In one major development, however, the Parks Department did deploy a huge green shipping container along the Center Drive near the Nethermead, and some park users took advantage, partly filling it by Sunday.

Despite its unsightliness, the Dumpster was a welcome addition, said Bob Ipcar of the dog owners group, FIDO.

“If we had four more [of them] spread out over the park, we could call this the first baby step toward reforming how parties of picnickers treat Prospect Park,” he said.

“We need a Dumpster at the Peninsula meadow as well; one at the top of the Ninth Street path; one next to the barbeque area by the Picnic House and the last in the northern part of the Long Meadow.”

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Reader Feedback

trashtalk from S. Slope says:
The parks dept can put all the dumpsters out they like but the trash wont put itself in. It is up to the people who come to the park.

EDUCATION needs to be the priority.
July 27, 2009, 1:17 pm
Mike from Carroll Gardens says:
Parks Dept personnel expect to be paid for not working? There are many citizens that would love to have a job in these times. If it wasn't for the filthy people who frequent the park we won't need the park sanitation people. Same can be said for crime. If it wasn't for the criminals among us, the cops would be out of a job.
July 27, 2009, 3:18 pm
Kimberly from Park Slope says:
Thank you Parks Department for the dumpster in the Nethermead this weekend. If a few more can be placed throughout the park on weekends, we are off to a good start in solving the trash problem.

The bins aren't pretty, but they help prevent the trash from being torn open and scattered by vermin overnight, giving sanitation workers and volunteers a fighting chance at keeping the park clean.

The day camp kids were surrounded by piles of open trash again Monday morning near the Picnic House--a bin there might encourage people not to leave their trash behind in mounds on the picnic tables where these kids play, draw, and eat.
July 27, 2009, 3:40 pm
Deanna from Kensington says:
Just wanted to shameless self-promote the documentation project a couple of weeks ago -- Respect Prospect. Folks can send pictures of trash to pics@respectprospect.com and they'll automatically be posted to Flickr and Twitter (@respectprospect), and after a moderator gets to it, to the RP website: http://respectprospect.com

Help us *show* people on a regular basis what we're talking about...
July 27, 2009, 4:11 pm
Fed Up from Park Slope says:
Jesus H. Christ, if the garbage can is full, then take the damned garbage to another can, and if you can't find one, then take it home with you. When your trash can is full at home, do you just throw your garbage on the floor? What do you do when your toilet gets clogged?

Cretins!
July 27, 2009, 4:27 pm
Harry from Slope says:
Hey Mike -- thanks for the OK to commit a crime, trash the park, etc. We can just view it as a public service.
If your building is consumed by vermin, or your car is rear-ended by some fool: Just be grateful that you're keeping exterminators, insurers and auto-body shops in business.
July 27, 2009, 5:02 pm
Not Goish from Prospect Heights says:
It's up to the REAL Goish, the editor of this fish-wrapper, to step up to the plate and investigate what REALLY went on between that scam "promotion" company and the Parks Department. What a crime.
July 27, 2009, 6:23 pm
Rhywun from Bay Ridge says:
Agree with Fed. Treat your park with respect. Your neighbors will thank you.
July 27, 2009, 10:02 pm
Pacholo from Red Hook says:
Tax dollars go to cleaning up the park. Stop being crybabies and tell the politicians to use the money to clean up after the citizens of NY enjoy a fine weekend.
July 27, 2009, 10:52 pm
Ajax from Prospect Heights says:
Tax dollars go to overtime plus damage control when the citizens of NYC don't clean up like sane adults. When costs go up, something else gets cut back.

Fast-food joints, other businesses, govt/office buildings, etc, also hire people to clean, but customers don't treat the floors like a garbage can.

The real issue is, why the hell are people DOING this? They're not even aiming for a trash can - they're leaving garbage any old lazyass place.
July 28, 2009, 1:55 am
Michael from Greenpernt says:
Third world attitudes re. garbage and dog poop prevail in NYC. There needs to be a public education program.
July 28, 2009, 9:43 am
YMDWH from Dirty BKLYN says:
YOUR MOMMA DONT WORK HERE !!!!
Clean up after your selF !!
Unless she homeless ...
July 28, 2009, 2:17 pm
BrooklynHere from BKNY says:
If my momma worked in the park, and I left that kind of mess - Geez ... I don't want to THINK about what would happen to me.
July 28, 2009, 4:43 pm
tess from park slope says:
Dear Neighbors,
I had a wonderful picnic with friends in CENTRAL PARK ovr the weekend with about 30 friends on the lawn closest to Strawberry Fields. There were many picnic-ers there and sheep meadow. When we left the park about daybreak, the lawns were emaculate. Why? Because everyone REPECTS Central Parks beauty. Most people brought extra plastic bags (the large black HEFTY-type) to throw out the extra garbage that would not fit in the cans. Or else the garbage with taken out of the park by the peoples. I just dont get why people of Brooklyn dont Respect Prospect Park the way they do Central park! 100 extra garbage cans wont help if the people dont throw their garbage away. or clean up after themselves. I understand its not ALL the people, just a select few that brings tons of food, alcoholic beverages and dozens of screaming kids with no activities for them, so they roam around on everyones blanket without respect. or they bring dogs off the leash or they blast their boom boxes -like everyone wants to hear their music at full decibal. Some people just need to be educated because they just dont give a ——. the end....
July 28, 2009, 6:07 pm
Dirty Harry from Bensonhurst says:
Central park probably gets just as filthy as prospect, but it being manhatten the ratio betweenm manpower (and funds) and park size is much better than that of prospect park.
July 28, 2009, 9:57 pm
Rob C from Park Slope says:
Clearly, the park needs help. It is time for residents of surrounding communities as well as park users to join the volunteer corps and assist the park staff.

I did!
July 29, 2009, 1:05 pm
Rob C from Park Slope says:
I would just like to add one item:

There are many economically disadvantaged people who use the park to escape from apartments that lack air conditioning. They set up in the park and spend daylight hours in this cooler setting. Many set up in the barbeque areas and those areas simply do not provide adequate trash containers. In addition, garbage cans are generally not lined, so it is impossible to easily and quickly keep up with trash removal on any given day. It is a glaring problem that park managers are not addressing. In my area of the park (Park Slope), one can pass many consecutive garbage cans that are overflowing. There have been times when I have placed my trash in a growing pile NEXT to a garbage can. I don't think that this is disrespectful to the park. I think it demonstrates a big gap between the the instincts of many park goers to be tidy and the parks ability or desire to respond to that instinct. Further, although I won't paint all park employees with a broad brush, it is fair to say that at various times of day and in all types of weather, there are park goers thatare just plain lazy. I would strongly support the outsourcing of trash clean up to organizations like the Doe Fund to undertake these efforts.

I did!
July 29, 2009, 1:15 pm
Rob C from Park Slope says:
I would just like to add one item:

There are many economically disadvantaged people who use the park to escape from apartments that lack air conditioning. They set up in the park and spend daylight hours in this cooler setting. Many set up in the barbeque areas and those areas simply do not provide adequate trash containers. In addition, garbage cans are generally not lined, so it is impossible to easily and quickly keep up with trash removal on any given day. It is a glaring problem that park managers are not addressing. In my area of the park (Park Slope), one can pass many consecutive garbage cans that are overflowing. There have been times when I have placed my trash in a growing pile NEXT to a garbage can. I don't think that this is disrespectful to the park. I think it demonstrates a big gap between the the instincts of many park goers to be tidy and the parks ability or desire to respond to that instinct. Further, although I won't paint all park employees with a broad brush, it is fair to say that at various times of day and in all types of weather, there are park goers thatare just plain lazy. I would strongly support the outsourcing of trash clean up to organizations like the Doe Fund to undertake these efforts.
July 29, 2009, 1:15 pm
whats wrong with us from prospect heights says:
well now, we all know that there arent enough garbage cans in the park and we al use the park. Why not just bring extra black garbage bags to the parks when y ou go on a picnic. If you see a family or group with extra garbage - give them a bag. I know its hard to wrap this idea around our heads, but maybe a little community-ism would help!!
July 29, 2009, 8:05 pm
Lucy from Windsor Terrace says:
Also notice that no limits to areas for barbeque are enforced. Many people are burning fires under the old trees, all over the place, not within the areas supposedly reserved for barbeques or picnics. I think Prospect Park is suffering disproportionately from taking everyone in the city who barbeques while the other parks do not allow it at all. Why does Prospect Park allow it? Send them to the beach to barbeque where it will do less damage to the environment.
Aug. 4, 2009, 9:12 am
MartyB from Forest Hills says:
We have the same problem in Flushing Meadow Park in Queens: people who use the park treat the grounds as their personal garbage can in spite of the fact that there are trash cans every 70 feet or so.

People have become slobs in both public and private environments. In the subways, people think nothing of leaving open, partially filled drink containers on the floor or newspapers on the seat of a subway car and in banks, people ask for a receipt, then throw it on the floor when there's a trash can usually within three feet of them.

After a period of notice, I think we ought to up the enforcement and fine people for littering in public places. Either the City will collect a lot of needed money or the parks, streets and subways will be a lot cleaner. Either way is a win-win. People trash the city today because they think it's acceptable. They think it's acceptable because no one calls them on it.

And for the record (Lucy), Flushing Meadow Park does permit barbecuing and I believe Van Courtland Park does as well.
Aug. 11, 2009, 3:48 pm

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