Dear Mayor, Vice Mayor, and Commissioners:
I would like to bring to your attention the restrictions being imposed on City residents and our high school student-athletes, with regard to the use of the public parks in our City.
As you know, athletics is a year-round endeavor these days, whether it be football, baseball, soccer, lacrosse, etc. These sports all require personal offseason conditioning and workouts, especially for those athletes that want to excel and play at the next level. There is no place better to engage in these activities than our public parks, but our City says no.
We are told you can’t use any training equipment such as footwork ladders, footwork hurdles, parachutes, leg bands, and, most recently, even cones. These are all standard training aides that every athlete uses to improve footwork and speed no matter what sport is played.
We are told that this is “training” and you need a permit. Yet there is no permit mechanism in the City for this type of activity.
We’ve been told $41/hour to use the field; however, we are not using the whole field. This cost is excessive given the limited space that is used. We are told if you have a “personal trainer” they need insurance and a permit. We are told it’s a liability if someone gets hurt. There is just as much a risk to get hurt on the playground or a pick game, which is allowed in the Parks. This is a distinction without a difference.
I have been in contact with the Director of Parks and Recreation through the Coral Springs comments website; City policy is their response.
The issue at hand is this policy itself. We have teenage kids who are student-athletes, all they want to do is work out on a Sunday morning, or any day for that matter, for a couple of hours to better themselves in the off-season, and are being denied that opportunity. As parents, are we to spend thousands of dollars to go to a private training facility just because we can’t use our parks, which we all pay taxes for? We are bothering no one, no one is complaining, we’ve never had an issue with anyone in the Parks other than the Parks and Recreation staff.
I have no problem paying for a permit if that’s what it takes, but let’s come up with a reasonable fee structure that benefits everyone. This Policy should be reviewed, and maybe not so rigidly interpreted.
As I have heard from many Coral Springs residents, “they’re driving people out of our parks.”
Scott A. Teschky
Scott A. Teschky is a Coral Springs resident. He has submitted this letter to the mayor and commission twice. The first time was on December 9, 2019, and has not yet heard back. Coral Springs Talk welcomes all opinions. Submit News here.