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Bird Rock residents urged to show more interest in parks

It might be time for Bird Rock residents to take more direct interest in its three public parks, Joe LaCava, president of the community council, said last week.

“We need to become more involved with our parks, take more ownership. … Parks are a tremendous asset. … I’d just like to raise the community’s level of interest,” he said to a crowd of 40-plus packing Marisco’s Restaurant who listened intently but commented little.

The community has three parks: Bird Rock Park, behind Bird Rock Elementary School; La Jolla Hermosa “Rock” Park, at Camino de la Costa and Chelsea Avenue; and Calumet Park, on Calumet Avenue between Midway Street and Sea Ridge Drive.

LaCava noted that unlike most city communities, which have only one recreation council serving as liaison to the city’s Parks and Recreation Department, La Jolla has three:

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  • La Jolla Shores Association, which is responsible for Kellogg Park, the Shores, Laureate Park, Cliffridge Park and Allen Field;
  • La Jolla Town Council, which is responsible for all the coastal parks, including Scripps, and Bird Rock’s Calumet and La Jolla Hermosa parks; and
  • La Jolla Recreation Council Inc., which oversees the recreation center on Draper Avenue and Bird Rock Park.

LaCava said, “When the joint-use agreement between the school and the city was being renegotiated for Bird Rock Park, how many in Bird Rock knew about that?”
He offered an alternative solution to gaining more community control over its parks.

“The idea is to have Bird Rock Park either go to the Town Council, or have all three Bird Rock parks put under a BRCC subcommittee,” LaCava said.

He cited one park that needs to be better managed: La Jolla Hermosa Park, otherwise known as “Rock Park.”

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“It’s one of the funkiest parks in all of La Jolla,” he noted, “because it’s all rocks with no sidewalk, and people tend to walk on the street on Chelsea, which is very narrow.”

To make “Rock Park” more walkable, LaCava suggested that rocks could be replaced with decomposed granite, which would solve access problems for people such as mothers with strollers.

“Maybe we could make it a community project,” he added, “and BRCC could fund the materials.”

I

n other business:

  • The annual Taste of Bird Rock community block-party celebration featuring food and live entertainment will be held July 16.
  • LaCava floated the idea of starting a farmers market in the community if the details can be worked out and a proper venue can be found.

“We wanted to see if the community was receptive to the idea, willing to work on it,” he said after the meeting, stressing that the project is still very much in the exploratory stage.