WEST SENECA, NY (WKBW) - A suspicious fire in Cazenovia Park Monday morning that caused damage to the golf course and nearby trees is just one of the many cases of vandalism plaguing the Olmstead Parks Conservancy.
"If a fire gets out of control, there are many houses in the area surrounding the parks," Olmsted Parks Conservancy Director of Operations Kevin Hanna.
Over the summer, recreational equipment was also destroyed at Delaware Park. Then, the Cazenovia Casino and Clubhouse were also burglarized.
"Any damage that is done where you have to replace equipment or make repairs it costs money and that takes away from other things we can be doing in the parks," Hanna said.
Hanna said this has been one of the worst years of vandalism they have ever seen within the park system with damages totaling more than $10,000. Park officials said there are some things that they can't put a price tag on.
"You have trees that are hundred of years old and they can be destroyed in an instant," Hanna said
Fire fighters also ripped up the golf course at Cazenovia Park, which will take money to replace, in their effort to fight the fire. Park officials said safety first.
"We want the fire department to feel like they can go on any areas especially when it has to do with public safety," Hanna said.
Now Park officials say they are looking to beef up security but they say it will be a challenge...
"Continue to improve security. That might be the addition of alarm systems and cameras. Of course improve lighting but those things cost money and we struggle with the resources to the degree we could get private donations. If the city does find the find we would certainly put those improvements in place," Hanna said.
The suspects who vandalized Delaware Park were caught and charged but police are still investigating other incidents including the recent fire.