Park Layne park called unsafe, township trustees say complaints rare

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

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Parents say the wont let kids play at Raynor Park

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

A Park Layne mom said she won’t bring her kids to Raynor Park because she believes its unsafe but Bethel Twp. trustees said they rarely get complaints about it.

Raynor Park off Fyffe Drive is a popular spot, said Bethel Twp. Trustee Nancy Brown, especially during the fall for sports such as soccer and football.

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“It’s clean, it’s safe,” Brown said. “Kids come down here all the time and play.”

Some parents like Brittani Smith, though, won’t bring their kids to the playground alone.

“It’s an ongoing problem and it’s not getting any better,” Smith said.

The mother of two said Raynor Park is the most convenient spot for her but she drives to Beavercreek to go to a park where she feels safer and more comfortable. Raynor Park is too secluded, she said, and has too much trash and inappropriate graffiti.

“I don’t want him to, once he starts learning to read, to pick up the words off here,” Smith said.

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Plus she said older kids use the park in the evenings to fight and can be hear cursing.

“I don’t want him to come home and say that,” she said.

The park is monitored by the Clark County sheriff’s deputy employed by the township, Brown said, and has surveillance cameras. They’ve had a few complaints in the past about inappropriate behavior and vandalism at the park, she said, but it’s well maintained.

“It’s reasonably clean,” she said. “You know we can’t keep it perfect but we do our best.”

The township mows the lawn, takes out the trash and does safety inspections of the equipment each week, she said.

The majority of park visitors are respectful, she said, but she understands it only takes a few people to ruin it for others.

“You can have kids down here playing, having a good time and then some troublemakers show up and, you know, we have no control over that,” Brown said. “But it’s rare.”

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Smith said she’d like to see better lighting at the park and the playground moved closer to the road.

“It’s kind of sad that my kids can’t come down here and play,” she said.

Bethel Twp. trustees are open to suggestions, Brown said, and are committed to upkeep at the park. Trustees recently approved a plan to upgrade the mulch in the playground, she said.

“If there is a specific problem, bring it us,” she said. “We’d be glad to address it.”

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