E-mail to Largo Mayor and Commissioners - Bonner Park and Budget Cuts
Please keep Bonner Park open. People who visit this little natural gem in Pinellas County come here for many reasons. During my time here as a volunteer I have enjoyed talking with and observing the people who visit Bonner.
A woman in her forties brings her wheelchair bound mother, pushing her along to the end of the intracoastal boardwalk. Together they watch the many waterbirds that feed near the overlook. Sometimes they see a dolphin popping in and out again as it moves through the water. Those who care for family members either at home or by giving them a break from assisted living institutions consider this park a very important part of their lives. Parents and Grandparents bring young family members to enjoy many activities and special events. Volunteers conduct birdwalks and plant identifying excursions. Many bring their cameras to capture the natural beauty that can be found at Bonner. Both Boy and Girl Scouts work on their merit badge projects here.
John R. Bonner donated this property to be maintained as a park for the Largo community. If closed, some unpleasant things can happen. Homeless people may settle here, perhaps lighting fires that can get out of control as they cook or try to keep warm. Criminal activities are also a danger. On the other hand, if Bonner is kept open, law-abiding citizens can be good "eyes and ears" for Largo police officers.
The Parks Department is just as important as the Recreation and Arts Departments. Any budget cuts or adjustments should be shared equally by all three departments. If necessary, daily admission to Bonner can be charged or a yearly pass can be purchased. Volunteers can help monitor, clean up, etc. I am willing to increase my hours working here as a volunteer if it helps to keep Bonner open. Regular park visitors probably feel the same way. Please discuss this matter and come up with a plan that will help keep Bonner Park open.
- Irene Hernandez
Return to Current Edition