‘You’re Promoting Bad Behavior’: Parks Officials Push Back on Installing Additional Trash Bin at Waveny

Parks officials last week pushed back on the idea of placing an additional trash receptacle in a trouble spot at Waveny where dog owners tend to dump used poop bags. Installing a bin near the turn at Lapham Road above the Merritt Parkway would amount to “promoting bad behavior,” according to Parks Superintendent John Howe. “By putting a trash can in there, you are allowing people then to stack it another 40 feet away and when we had trash cans all over the parks and all over our school fields, they were in worse shape because people had a knack of saying, ‘It’s near the trash can, it’s close enough,’ ” Howe told members of the Parks & Recreation Commission at their June 12 meeting in Town Hall. “You have animals that will take out the garbage and strew it around. I would sooner keep going like we are, removing the bag.”

He referred to a bag that a park visitor ties to a tree to receive the used bags.

Parks Officials Address Unusual Algae Problem at Waveny Pool

Parks officials said last week that they opened Waveny Pool last month while battling a rare problem with algae that had made its water unclear. Fluctuating temperatures in May contributed toward an algae growth that “I have only seen once in 18 years,” according to Recreation Director Steve Benko. Addressing a question raised by Parks & Recreation Commissioner Sally Campbell at the group’s June 12 meeting, Benko said workers spent time hand-vacuuming the bottom of the popular pool to rid it of algae that “affected our water quality.”

“I think we have it back to balance, we treated it,” Benko said said at the regular meeting, held in Town Hall. Asked by Campbell whether he talked to those who oversee other large-pool facilities when such problems arise, Benko said yes and added, “This is the first time that we have had this issue.”

“It’s a matter of trial and error, what works, I did put in some algaecide on Monday [June 10],” he said. Campbell said she went swimming on the day of the meeting “and it was 100% better than it was.”

“But it still has a little ways to go,” she said.

Did You Hear … ?

The Waveny Park Conservancy wants to rename the pond at the foot of the sledding hill ‘Anderson Pond’ after receiving a $350,000 gift toward a restoration project there from the Harlan and Lois Anderson Foundation, according to the organization’s president, Caroline Garrity. The Parks & Recreation Commission on Wednesday voted 9-0 in favor of the naming rights proposal. Sally Campbell, a regular member of the Commission who also sits as vice chairman of the Conservancy, was among those who voted. New Canaan’s highest elected official has said her dual role amounts to an apparent conflict. ***


Months after a New Canaan Country School neighbor sued the Planning & Zoning Commission over its approval of a new athletic facility, the school purchased that neighbor’s property for $3 million, tax records show.

Video Surveillance Cameras at Waveny: Parks Officials Call for Detailed Police Recommendation 

Parks officials said Wednesday night that the first step in determining whether video surveillance cameras should be installed at Waveny is to get a formal, detailed opinion from local police. An online petition with more than 1,400 digital signatures that advocates for the cameras and data on how such security systems benefit the public are “very important pieces” of the discussion, Parks & Recreation Commission Chair Rona Siegel said during the appointed body’s regular meeting. And a “recommendation from law enforcement to the town, presented to Parks and Rec is the correct step,” Siegel said at the meeting. “A clear and concise opinion from law enforcement” that includes recommendations on just where the cameras would go “is what the town needs,” she said at the meeting, held in Town Hall. Other questions such as what local agency or agencies would have access and jurisdiction over video content and how long it would remain before officials taped over it also must be part of the town’s decision, officials said.

Parks Commissioner: Trash Bin at Waveny To Address Problem of Dumped Dog Waste Bags

Saying a similarly placed trash receptacle has worked in Irwin Park, officials announced last week that Waveny visitors will have a new bin to dump their used dog poop bags. As it is now, many of those bags end up dumped in the southwest corner of the park, where a trail that runs alongside the Merritt Parkway intersects with Lapham Road, according to Parks & Recreation Commissioner Sally Campbell. “Someone always puts a trash bag up there,” Campbell said during the Commission’s May 8 meeting, held at Town Hall. She referred to a bag that a park visitor ties to a tree to receive the used bags. Campbell said she has spoken to the head of public works about putting a trash bin in Waveny, and that he’s “is in agreement that that’s not a bad idea.”

“It is just one trash can in the park, it is not everywhere, but it is just a natural turn” in Waveny for those carrying the bags, Campbell said.