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Park Staff Prepare To Tackle A San Diego Summer

Aired 5/28/12 on KPBS News.

Memorial Day marks the beginning of the summer season, which is prime time for city parks.

— San Diego parks are open all year. But Memorial Day is the beginning of "park season" in San Diego and that puts city park staff on a faster treadmill.

The Southern California Automobile Club says San Diego is the destination for the region's holiday travelers during the Fourth of July week.
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Above: The Southern California Automobile Club says San Diego is the destination for the region's holiday travelers during the Fourth of July week.

Stacey LoMedico, director of the Parks and Recreation department, said maintenance and cleanup become much bigger jobs during the months of summer.

"We receive more visitors in that 90-day period than likely throughout the rest of the season," she said. "Not just because of the influx of tourists at our parks like Mission Bay, Balboa and our shoreline beaches, but also because the weather changes, people are on vacation, and school's out."

LoMedico said park staff have been focusing on the mundane tasks like mulching and parking-lot striping to prepare for the crowds, and the biggest summer crowds are found at the beaches.

LoMedico said the city has hired 35 additional grounds keepers to deal with that. Last week San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders also announced plans to restore funding for weekly mowing of parks. In the past year, shaggy park turf has gotten the parks department the most complaints.

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