There is currently an effort under way to by some local residents to have the county take control of Manzanita Park and open the main gate to the public from 8AM to 8PM year-round. While on the surface this may sound like a good idea, the ramifications of such a move would mean that the youth sports organizations at the park could lose control over the facilities that they worked so hard to raise funds for, created and have maintained for more than 30 years - all without money from the county government. A significant factor in why our park facilities are in such great shape compared to those at other county parks fully open to the public is that our youth organizations and NCYRA, the park board, are in control of their usage.
Those seeking to change the park operation are well organized and politically savvy. They consist of those wanting to walk the trails and ride horses. But they may not realize what the actual costs of the changes they want will entail. They expect to be able to access the park from 8AM to 8PM at no cost. Well, if that is the case, who will pay for the extra supplies for the restrooms, the additional trash collection, not to mention the removal of the you-know-what the horses leave? Our youth sports complex at Manzanita takes up about 50 of the almost 500 acres of the park and we are not opposed to letting these folks use the other portions of the park. They are already allowed to use the park when the gates are open. As a matter of fact, it was NCYRA that built the horse unloading area just above the baseball fields. But having the main gate that leads to our complex open all day, every day, year-round is not the right solution. Having another entrance that could be used by others, with a large parking area and room to unload horses, would be a better solution.
The opposition has been actively contacting the County Board of Supervisors to gain their support for several months. We are in the position of playing catch-up and need help ASAP.
Please take the time to contact the members of the Board of Supervisors. Attached are several documents: one letter for each of the supervisors and a list of the supervisors with their mailing and email addresses. There is also a file outlining the history of the park. You can simply download and print each of the letters for the supervisors. You can also write a letter in your own words. Then, please sign the letters at the bottom and print your name and address after your signature. Or you can send the supervisors an email reflecting what is in the letters. We need to have a lot of folks contact the supervisors; not just a few dozen, but a couple of hundred. Ask your friends and family members to help out too.
Thank you for your help,
AYSO Region 256