Boca parks are some of the nicest parks I have seen and one of our greatest assets in Boca Raton. Our City Officials and the Beach & Park District have done a tremendous job in keeping our green spaces and recreational areas pristine. Parks in Boca provide a wonderful place for social interaction within our natural environment and offer parents and families opportunities to meet and play with friends. But could they become a liability if they are deemed unsafe by residents? If they aren’t seen as safe could they lose their value and benefit to the community?

When I dropped my kids at Camp Boca this summer, I asked a staff member at the community center “what do you think could be done to improve the safety of our parks?” She mentioned that they would like to see security cameras installed throughout the park, especially the playgrounds. “We have so many kids here and Park Rangers are not enough.”

I then stopped on my way out and spoke with the one Ranger on duty. He said “we need better security here for our sake and your sake.” He said the best solution is for ordinary citizens like me to say something. He mentioned that Park Rangers are there as a “scarecrow” but if an incident happens they have to radio police.

With our attention and our public resources focused on schools safety, our parks have become vulnerable. Parents – nothing will take the place of watching your own kids, and we cannot rely upon a few unarmed park rangers to protect us. Can we come together as a community and address this concern? Perhaps form a Park Safety Task Force? I would be happy to hear other mitigating measures that can be implemented.

Thank you,
Michelle Grau

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Michelle was born and raised in Windsor Ontario, Canada and moved to Boca Raton with her family when she was 16. After receiving a B.S. in Accounting at Florida State University and her CPA license, she returned to Boca Raton and started her career in public accounting. With her husband Tony Grau, she has four children, two sets of twins. When not carpooling around town, she loves boating, scuba diving, and playing tennis and the piano. She is dedicated to environmental projects and preserving our natural landscape here in Boca Raton. Michelle hopes to raise awareness about the threats to our parks and beaches, and to get more people in the community involved.

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