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Vandals wreck Mayor Bob Leonard Park field

An act of vandalism said to be “rare” by town of Farragut officials at a town park athletic field was primarily limited to cosmetic damage, with the field back in service within a week of the incident.

The youth soccer field at Mayor Bob Leonard Park located next to Watt Road had a “figure 8” pattern cut into its Bermuda grass and soil by a vehicle during a heavy weekend rain period late Saturday night, Sept. 23.

A swath “about forty to fifty yards wide, and probably a hundred yards long,” was cut into the 60- by 108-yard field, said Jason Wright, Athletic and Park coordinator for the town, adding the vehicle’s driver simply “jumped a curb” to enter the field.

However, “It was not as bad as it looks — it looks worse when you look at it from the road or above,” said Sue Stuhl, the town’s Leisure Services director. “There weren’t any significant ruts.”

Smoothed over with sand and back open for use by late last week, the biggest problem with the damage “is some of the Bermuda [grass] was pulled out by the roots,” Stuhl said, adding it cannot grow back until next spring with cold weather now approaching.

“It happens from time to time, but we are very fortunate in the town that we don’t have a lot of vandalism,” Stuhl added. “Of course, we have park assistants in the parks every day, so that helps keep some of this down. And we lock restrooms at night.”

Stuhl did not place a dollar amount on the damage.


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