Bend Parks begins Pine Nursery turf repairs

Four teens cited for 'cutting cookies'; reimbursement to be sought

POSTED: 3:56 PM PDT September 15, 2013    UPDATED: 8:20 PM PDT September 16, 2013 
BEND, Ore. -

Four Bend juveniles were cited on criminal mischief charges early Sunday after a car doing spinouts in the grass at Pine Nursery Park caused several thousand dollars worth of damage to the turf, authorities said.

The vandalism was discovered by Officer Rick May of Patrol Services Inc. when he arrived at Pine Nursery to lock the gates around 11:20 p.m. Saturday, the private security firm said. On the lawn near the roundabout in the park, May found the piece of a grill that came off a Subaru WRX and turned it over to Oregon State Police for evidence.

Bend Parks and Rec District staff were called in Sunday morning to assess the damage, and that work continued Monday.

Bend Parks and Rec Landscape Manager Mike Duart said Monday it should cost about $3,000, the most expensive being the labor.

"It's work that we didn't plan to do this week," said Duart. "So now we're going to allocate some resources over here, and probably have to spend a couple days."

The damage was limited to the turf along the entry road, not to the playing fields.

Duart said repairs should be completed by next week.

OSP Trooper Josh Nagle said a part of a Subaru's faring was found at the scene, apparently helping authorities find the vehicle and charge the minors.

Park visitors told NewsChannel 21 they were disgusted by the damage and that they hoped the youths would have to pay for the repairs.

"This is ridiculous," said Sandy Wiegers." It's damaged all up and down the entire parkway. This is a beautiful place. Why would anyone want to damage it like this?"

"I used to do landscaping myself," Bend resident, Cody McGriff said. "So I know what it's like to put time and care into lawns, and for someone to just carelessly come in and wreck it with a vehicle, which is really easy to do, is disappointing."

And indeed, park district Executive Director Don Horton said the agency does seek reimbursement for the repair costs in such cases, "or have the minor work it off."

Duart said unfortunately, lawn vandalism is nothing new to them. Just last week, Bend Parks and Rec had to fix a section of lawn that had peel-out marks on it after a gate was accidentally left open.

The park district budgets for vandalism, but they don't like to spend their money that way.

Duart said Pine Nursery sees damage all the time from people cutting across the grass to get to the parking lot. He said it has caused damage to many of the park's sprinklers.

"We're actually placing rocks out here right now, around valve boxes, and different areas that we are actually constantly being drove over by cars," said Duart.