Hello FODE Board and PARD/Aquatics friends!
I wanted to fill you all in regarding our experience patrolling the Deep Eddy parking lot over the Labor Day weekend. First, thanks to all those who gave their time to volunteer for this effort. And thanks to the Park Rangers for keeping an eye on us over the weekend. We patrolled the lot for about ninety minutes on each day, Friday though Monday.
Friday afternoon, Curtis and Billy watched the lot, and report that nearly half the cars coming to park between 4:30-6pm were planning to park in our lot and eat dinner nearby, so they were turned away. Additionally, Pool Burger employees were surprised since they claimed to regularly use our lot.
Saturday, Jeb and I were on duty, and since there was a UT game that evening, the pool was busy but the restaurants were not so busy. We still turned away 15-20 cars, and were thanked by countless groups of swimmers, especially the families. At 6, the lot had space for anyone wanting to come and swim.
Sunday, Joe and Sarah were on duty. Joe also says the swimmers with children in tow were the most thankful for our efforts, since they needed to get in the pool. The afternoon was cut short though by thunder.
Monday, Randeen and Bill stood watch, and were actually questioned by a Pool Burger employee about their efforts. He was incredulous that FODE was standing our ground to protect our pool parking lot. He denied their employees park there, even though we have watched it daily. And of course we know their patrons park there every day as well.
So, we learned a few things in this effort.
- Patrolling the lot works, we have turned away a large number of bar and restaurant patrons .
- We have many volunteers who are happy to continue this effort to educate our neighbors.
- We could also hire some willing youngsters to stand watch for us.
- There still has been no effort to ticket or tow any cars, though the signage is clear.
- We still need a large park entry sign which can help explain park/lot use.
- Larger parking signs than what exist would send a clear message.
- Veterans Drive parking is free on the weekends!
Let’s continue to work together and solve this problem, parking meters won’t have a positive effect. Thanks, Paul.