How many of you, when you were young, spent countless hours enjoying the seesaw or the merry-go-round at your town's local park?
Those are joys that our children today cannot experience because of concerns about youngsters being injured.
You may remember a child getting hurt at the playground. But many were also injured falling out of trees or tumbling to the sidewalk on their roller skates. All these fun activities involved some risk, but also built fond memories and physical skills and abilities.
In Tuesday's edition of the Roundup, we reported on a young man's efforts to initiate construction on a BMX track at Rumsey Park. The track will provide the pedal-powered BMX bicycle riders a rolling trail of jumps and corners on which to practice their skills.
Some parents and nearby residents have voiced concerns about the safety of such a track.
We support this project because the age group that enjoys this type of activity is also at risk of becoming involved in much more dangerous behavior. In fact, BMX bicycle riding can be a fun and safe sport if riders are responsible and educated. It's probably more dangerous to ride a bicycle on the streets of Payson than it will be on this groomed course. We think it would be a good idea for the town to put up signage clearly outlining safety guidelines and liability restrictions and perhaps even make it a requirement that those who use the track wear helmets and other safety gear.
Other concerns have been raised about possible rising levels of dust and noise from the track. We don't believe that BMX riders will create any more noise or dust than adults playing softball or fans cheering on bull riders. After all, this is a town park.
We'd like to recognize the good work of the volunteers, our Parks and Recreation Department and especially the young man, Meikle Garrett, who organized the beginning construction effort on the BMX track.
Adults constantly talk about how we must provide activities for our young people. We can't just talk about this and then criticize a project when it comes along. This is a good thing for our children. What kind of life would they have if we try to keep them away from every possible harm?
No one did that to us -- and we're glad.