Community reacts to trashed Veteran’s Park in DeRidder

Published: May. 28, 2019 at 6:36 PM CDT
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DeRidder, LA (KPLC) - This Memorial Day was a shock for those who frequent DeRidder’s Veterans Park. Pictures of the park covered in trash were posted to the city’s Facebook page, leaving residents in an uproar.

Despite the photos, residents who frequent the park say this was uncommon. Ernest Draleau says the blame lies with the community.

“The people that rented the thing or used it, they didn’t clean up after it," Draleau said. "It’s not nothing to do with the city.”

Ashley Craddock, DeRidder’s community services director, says the city takes pride in park cleanup and that the trash was result of a long and busy holiday weekend.

“We have a dedicated public works employee who cleans all five of our parks everyday of the week," Craddock said. "His sole job is to clean up all the trash and the bathrooms and all of our public areas.”

Craddock says they even implemented extra trash cans ahead of the holiday and that the scattered litter could have been a result of wildlife.

“That is possible that a rodent or a creature of some kind spread it out a little bit more," Craddock said.

Craddock wants to ensure community members that this is a lesson learned. Going forward she says the city will consider holiday trash cleanup.

“Almost any of our holiday weekends, it’s something to think about and so they’re always willing to do their part to keep it clean," Craddock said. "Sometimes it just sneaks up on us.”

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