Pendleton park damaged by tornadoes falls victim to vandals

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PENDLETON, Ind. — A central Indiana park is cleaning up again.

Pendleton Falls Park was hit by the Memorial Day tornadoes.  After that mess, park officials are dealing with another caused by vandals.

“It’s disheartening, it really is. It hurts the whole community,” said Donnie Meyer, park maintenance director.

Saturday night, someone armed with blue, black and red spray paint took over the park.  The vandals hit several parts of the complex including restrooms, concession stands and a parking lot. Whoever is responsible spent time at the park.

“Why anyone would vandalize the community is beyond me, that makes no sense to me. I’m sure it’s just a bunch of kids,” said Kathleen Monroe, a park goer.

Some of the graffiti is so offensive that it’s been covered with a tarp. A set of restrooms remain closed because of the mess.

“It’s very unnecessary. We look at our park as being a hub to come and meet,” said Meyer.

This is round two of clean up. There are still massive trees down and caution tape roped around much of the park hit by tornadoes a few months ago.

“We still have trees that are still falling from all the winds, so we are still dealing with everything and it’s going to be a long-time recovery,” said Meyer.

The graffiti repair bill is going to expensive and there’s only so much money. Meyer admits the vandalism is going to delay getting all the tornado damage fixed.

“It’s taking me and my staff away from doing this to go over here and open this back up,” said Meyer.

The community wants police to catch whoever did this and for those vandals to face the consequences.

“They know it’s wrong. They knew when they were doing it was wrong,” said Monroe.

Park officials are looking at installing security cameras within the park.

There is a reward for information that helps lead police to the vandals.  If you know anything, call Pendleton Police at 765-778-3933.

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