Saturday, August 30, 2008

Labor Day, the Landfill, and Bearclaw Pond

About a dozen kids petitioned City Hall to leave the landfill open over the Labor Day weekend. Or at least unlocked.

I sympathize with them. I used to go fishing in Bearclaw Pond myself.

That was before people built houses on the track between Bearclaw Pond and Durbin's Pond, and re-named it Waterview Lane. Then one of the Baums built a place on west 9th, overlooking Hinkley Creek. Within a few years they had neighbors, all the way to Center Avenue.

That left Bearclaw Pond blocked in by lawns, Fisk Implement, and the landfill.

Fisk Implement has a sturdy fence, and a touchy alarm system, ever since someone towed a harrow away, back in 1996.

The people living around Bearclaw Pond don't particularly like kids trooping across their lawns.

Last year, Loonfoot Falls put a fence around the landfill, and started enforcing the rule about staying out unless you worked there, or were dumping something.

The kids didn't like that. As young fisherman Alex Johnson said, "it's like they don't want anybody in there." Alex doesn't see why the landfill should be off limits. "We don't mess around, much," he explained.

City Hall says that they don't have a choice. The city's insurance company has rules about access to places like landfills.

Alex says he understands City Hall's position, but won't give up.

"Maybe we can make a path along the side of the landfill, or get one of those people to let us cross their yard," he told me.

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