Despite Security Guards And Cameras, Vandals Strike Outdoor Campus Again

Outdoor Campus Director After Vandalism: 'We don't let it slow us down.'

The Outdoor Campus in southwest Sioux Falls has been vandalized again. Officials say it happened sometime overnight. Neither their security guards or their cameras were able to catch the vandals in action.

The Outdoor Campus is no stranger to vandalism. Back in July of 2015, their boat shed was set on fire. They lost more than $25,000 in canoes, kayaks, boating equipment and hunting decoys.

The Director of the Outdoor Campus says her staff noticed the vandalism first thing Friday morning. Two windows to their garden shed had been shattered. The Outdoor Campus has a play area for children. Part of it’s tree tunnel had been torn down. Vulgar words were also written on a fort, and a little wooden bridge was put inside one of the forts. The director says she frustrated with the vandalism, but is amazed once again by all of the community support.

“After it happened volunteers heard about it and they came out here and they’ve been taking things down and fixing things up and they painted one of the forts so you can’t see any of the bad words,” said Outdoor Campus Director Thea Miller Ryan. “We don’t let it slow us down. We just keep going and we make things better again because that’s the kind of people we are.”

Ryan says the vandalism likely occurred sometime after 10 p.m. and the security guards must have just missed them. She says she doesn’t know what to do to prevent the vandalism as it’s impossible to cover more than 100 acres.

The Outdoor Campus estimates that the damage to the windows will cost them at least a few hundred dollars.

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