Valley Parks Packed on Easter

March 23, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
Authorities in the south valley enforced restrictions to park goers this Easter Sunday in an effort to reduce crime and overcrowding.Visalia's Mooney Grove Park was limited to 650 cars this year. In previous years, the park packed more than 5,000 cars.

Visalia police turned away drivers who didn't buy a ticket to park ahead of time. More than 30 police officers were out patrolling the park including several officers from the gang unit.

They say there was a gang presence at the park but there haven't been any incidents.

Police say people have been happy with the increased patrols during the holiday weekend. Lt. Jason Salazar, Visalia Police Department, says "It's been significantly better this year with our ability to move around the park and be within the park I think people are enjoying the park a little more and there's just less problems so we're seeing that as a positive change."

People were still allowed to walk into the park as long as they parked far enough away.

Fresno parks were extremely busy Sunday too. The parking lots were almost completely full at Woodward Park all day and drivers had a tough time getting in.

Crews directed traffic outside the park, but the lines were long and sometimes didn't move at all.

Inside the park, thousands of people had fun playing games, barbecuing, and picnicking.

Parking was hard to come by at Roeding Park as well and police had to block traffic coming in from time to time.

The rides at Storyland and Playland were packed with families and kids who didn't make it onto the rides made their own rides during a wheelbarrow race.


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