LETTER: If you think Port parks need better care, dig in and enjoy it

To Ozaukee Press:

I read, with discomfort, the letter to the editor in last week’s Ozaukee Press that criticized Port Washington parks, the writer wishing for better kept spaces.

I moved to a Port Harbour Lights condo in Port Washington in January 2018. Come spring, I could see that my favorite walking park—Rotary Park—was sprouting many weeds. Before long, I began plucking them. I couldn’t help myself!                  

A few weeks later, I called Jon Crain, who manages the trees and plantings in the parks. I asked if I could volunteer to weed and prune. Jon was delighted to have some help. He met me at Rotary Park and we discussed what I could do. Then began a sweet summer of making the park more beautiful.  

I’d tell Jon when I’d be working, and he’d send delightful college students to mentor and help me work. I bought my own tools and even some plants. It turns out, it doesn’t have to be your own garden to enjoy the work.

It was fun spreading my contagion for beautiful gardens to 20-somethings. Visitors and neighbors often commented on how lovely everything looked. I watched the park serve as a gorgeous and inexpensive venue for countless weddings, family portraits and birthday parties, my freshly weeded spaces serving as backdrops for a lifetime of memories.

So I get it. The parks need some help.  But Jon is a hard-working man who does a fantastic job on limited resources. Perhaps the city needs to appropriate funds to hire workers throughout the season, not just during summer break. The tree fall from last summer’s deluge left him with a staggering work load and very little help. He did the best he could.

If you want to see our parks improve, dig in. It’s far more effective than criticism. And you’ll enjoy the work as much as I have.

Barbara Joosse
Port Washington



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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

125 E. Main St.
Port Washington, WI 53074
(262) 284-3494


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