Bizarre messages, curse words and offensive symbols, that’s what those walking around The Outdoor Campus found all over one of the gazebos last week.
It has since been cleaned up, thanks to the City of Sioux Falls and a good samaritan from Lennox.
"Somebody had posted pictures [and] being a Sunday, I knew that they wouldn't be able to get to it,” says Tony Tripp.
After seeing graffiti dominate a gazebo with a variety of messages including one that stated "you will eat the flesh of your sons and the flesh of your daughters,” Tripp decided to clean it up himself.
"I've got three girls of my own that I bring out to parks and what not, just to see that kind of stuff in this area is irritating if nothing else,” says Tripp. “You don’t want to explain to your child what some of this stuff is or have them see it.”
"When people I don't even know take time to beautify our area, it makes you feel good, it makes everybody feel good,” says Director of The Outdoor Campus Thea Miller Ryan.
The Outdoor Campus is no stranger to vandalism.
Last summer, a fire broke out in one of the boat sheds.
It, and everything inside, including kayaks, canoes, life preservers and paddles, all burnt to the ground.
"It is something you have to deal with, it makes you sad more than angry but you know you turn around and someone is doing a good thing like helping clean up,” says Ryan.
"It's a lot better, it's a gorgeous area, I would say it's the best park the city has,” adds Tripp.
While the Lennox man can't take all the credit for this spotless gazebo, "I didn't bring enough, it was a long enough trip that I didn't want to make a couple more,” laughs Tripp; he's glad to have erased the parts he did.
"People are cowards and came to an area somewhere secluded so obviously you're not going to get caught, and then kind of spoke out with their paint cans, which is awfully dumb,” he says. “I'm glad it's gone.”
A park caretaker says spray paint vandalism to this extent is rare.
The Parks and Recreation Department did contact police; however they were told that it is unlikely they will find the person or persons who did it.
The Parks department says they had to wait until Monday to sand blast the concrete.
It was too wet last week from all the rain when the graffiti was discovered.