Taking Action Paid Off

Since moving to Northern New Jersey, I’ve taken Nicholas to James Braddock Park in North Bergen nearly every day this past spring and summer.

It’s been a joy watching him learn to climb, slide, fall and interact with other kids. Just trying to keep him from poking them in the nose or pushing them out-of-the-way so he can get in the crawling tunnel first has been a challenge.

The other challenge has been trash. Not trash from me or Nicholas but overwhelming piles of trash that the park crews don’t seem to pick up. Every day I’d pick up a few water bottles, sticky wrappers and apple cores.

And then I heard another parent say to their child, don’t you want to go to another park? This one is dirty. And she was right. It was trash was just everywhere. Cups and food by the swings, banana peels underneath the jungle gyms, soda cans and juice boxes all around the fountains. It was disgusting. And I was disgusted. But what could I do about it?

Then I remembered I had an i-phone that could take pretty good pictures. I began snapping away. I was going to send these pictures to the park supervisor and the town superintendent’s office with an email.

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My email read as follows:

I am sending you an email about the growing trash piles at the playground near my home  at the James Braddock Park in North Bergen off Bergenline Avenue/Kennedy Blvd.I’ve taken my son here almost every day during this spring. And now that the summer is here, the trash keeps piling and no one seems to pick it up. I often would take it upon myself to pick up when I saw trash around, but now it’s just overwhelming.The garbage receptacles are often placed away from areas that people who use the playground equipment sit. And that doesn’t encourage others to walk across the park to find one.Is it possible the crews, who I often see doing other parts of the park, could visit this area at least 2 to 3 times a week to pick up the trash and empty the trash cans?And perhaps they could move a few of the cans in the area where the children play near benches, so that when people sit down to eat an outdoor lunch they don’t just leave it all over the ground?It’s not sanitary for the kids and it just looks plain ugly.


A Park Lover

Esther Dillard

I felt really great after sending it. I didn’t know if it would really make any difference. However, when I came back to the park after a week away on vacation, the trash was cleaned up and the place was nearly sparkling. I was completely impressed!

I sent a thank you email.

However, I also send more photos with another request. The women’s bathroom near the  playground.


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2 Responses to Taking Action Paid Off

  1. Cherie July 10, 2010 at 8:06 pm #

    Way to go Esther! If more parents, community members did that, I am sure we would have a cleaner society and a better sense of pride.

    • Esther July 10, 2010 at 11:04 pm #

      Thanks for commenting Cherie! I appreciate it. Gotta get better at this blogging thing.

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