HONOLULU (KHON2) — A flurry of complaints from residents after the city called damage at a Waipio dog park vandalism. Some park users argue more should have been done to fix the problems in the first place.
The city announced on Friday that somebody had vandalized Patsy T. Mink Central O‘ahu Regional Park by spraying the grass with a vinegar mixture causing it to turn brown.
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Regular park users said they did it because the weeds had grown out of control, growing up to two feet at times.
“You can’t even see the dog or the waste. And when you walk through the weeds, the urine will be all over your legs because that’s where the dogs go,” said a park user who didn’t want to be identified.
Park users said the spraying was done with good intentions.
“I don’t think anybody had any other intention other than to just kind of keep the place looking nice for the dogs and for the users,” said Micah Doane.
Park users said the solution was also meant to get rid of the ants that bite people and dogs. They added that the group had complained to the city multiple times.
“They claimed that they were shorthanded, the lawnmower broke, and the priority wasn’t the dog park,” said the anonymous park user.
A spokesman for the city sent a statement that said, “Regardless of the intentions… the result is dead and dying grass. Now all dog owners are without this dog park until we can revitalize the grounds.”
The director of the city parks department added, “The dog park area is maintained… I have not received a single complaint about the maintenance at the CORP dog park.”
The city plans to close the park on Wednesday for repairs but park users point out that there isn’t really that much to fix because most of the grass has already grown back. Park users said the closure seems to be more of a punishment than anything else.
“It wouldn’t be a problem if you properly maintained it in the first place and if you’re gonna close the park, what are you closing it for?” asked the park user.
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It’s not clear how long the park will be closed. The city said the best way to file a complaint is through the Honolulu 311 app or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.