CUYAHOGA FALLS, Ohio (WJW) – Local authorities hope someone can help identify an individual or individuals responsible for a tremendous amount of damage done to multiple soccer and baseball fields.
“It’s very extensive. It’s not one small area. They must have been there a while, probably multiple trucks, four-wheel drive, I’m guessing. You saw the damage, it’s just horrific,” said Mayor Don Walters.
Vandals drove ‘donuts’ throughout the vast open fields at Waterworks Park, leaving ruts two to six inches deep throughout the park.
“I heard there was a few donuts and I’m like, ‘oh, it probably ruined one or two fields and we will have to adjust,’ but it’s literally the entire soccer area. There’s no place for us to have good fields,” said Josh Soudry, president of the Cuyahoga Falls Soccer Club.
The club, with hundreds of young soccer players, is left to try and find alternate fields to start their season in April.
“It’s sad. It hurts. I mean, it really does,” said Soudry
“There are a few green spaces here in Cuyahoga Falls that we can use, but none as big and as extensive as Waterworks. We can piecemeal a field here and a field there so it will be inconvenient for parents who have kids at multiple ages. They have to drop one kid off here and another kid off here.”
The city says there has been similar damage in the past, but nothing this extensive.
“They actually were intentional. This is all fenced off, so they had to go all the way up and around and down a hill to get to this area,” said Walters
“There’s a lot of kids that depend on that park, so we are going to do the best we can to find alternate places early in the year and we will get them right back in there as early as we can,” he added.
Walters believes someone knows who is responsible and will offer information to help identify them. He is directing calls to an anonymous tips line, 330-971-TIPS.
“We are going to work on getting that repaired the best we can. It’s very soggy, as you know, right now, so we are going to get all of our crews out there the best we can. If not, we are going to find alternate locations in the springtime until we can get that repaired,” said Walters.