Another summer has begun.
That means another year of fun at Compo Beach. And another season of Parks and Recreation Department employees picking up all our garbage, making sure we’ll have the best possible time at one of the most beautiful spots in town.
It’s a tough job most days. They do it cheerfully, morning, afternoon and into the evening.
But nothing compares to the fireworks.
That’s crunch time. They prepare ahead. They work hard all day and night, even as the pyrotechnics explode overhead.
Then their real work begins.
The moment the last firework fades, 15,000 folks head for their cars. They leave behind a phenomenal amount of stuff.
Coolers. Folding chairs. Tables. Umbrellas.
Plus tons — literally — of uneaten food, along with the usual cans, bottles, suntan lotion, bug spray, beach balls, footballs, pails, shovels, flip flops, magazines, newspapers, and whatever else someone needs for a day at the beach.
The scene at 11 p.m. is like a war zone, or natural disaster.
Yet by dawn the next morning, Compo is completely normal.
Garbage cans are empty. The seawall is clean. The sand has been groomed.
It happens overnight. But it doesn’t just happen.
Parks & Rec crews work incredibly hard — in the dark — to get the beach ready for another day of enjoyment.
No one sees them. No one thanks them. It’s their job, after all.
But they do it incredibly well.
For that reason, they’re our Unsung Heroes of this almost-fireworks week.
And if you really want to give them a hand, take all your crap home with you Monday night.