The Billings Parks and Recreation staff is busy springing into action this week. Workers got a late start this season but are on track with deadlines.
At the first sight of summer, children, parents, and folfers flock to Billings' many parks to enjoy a little fun in the sun. "I think everybody is excited to get out after the cold weather we had in April which delayed our ability to open the restrooms and turn on the irrigation systems, because it was getting so cold at night things would freeze up," Billings Parks Superintendent, Jon Thompson said.
Thompson said it's exciting to get Billings' nearly 2,500 acres of park land ready for visitors. "That's what we're all about is making the parks presentable, open, and all facilities running for the citizens of Billings and our visitors," Thompson said.
Dustan Drew travels from Livingston every week to visit his daughter, Kimberly. Dustan said Pioneer Park is the perfect place for young Kimberly to burn off some energy. "It's hard for me to find a place where I can spend 8 hours with my daughter, and without parks it would be a lot harder for me to figure out what I was going to do with her for 8 hours," Dustan Drew said.
Dustan said he appreciates everything the parks and recreation staff does to keep the nearly 171 locations up to par. "It's nice to have a clean park. I would be a lot more worried if there were cigarette butts or class in the sand. I wouldn't feel comfortable for my daughter to be in the sand that way," Drew said.
Right now, workers are busy spraying weeds and updating the Rose Park swimming pool. Jon Thompson said all pools will open at the beginning of June. Officials said the nearly 35 seasonal workers needed to maintain the parks have already been hired this year.