Beer cans, mouth guards and other trash blemish Steamboat park on busy Fourth of July weekend | SteamboatToday.com

Beer cans, mouth guards and other trash blemish Steamboat park on busy Fourth of July weekend

Scott Franz

Steamboat Springs residents who walked by the Ski Town ball fields Sunday evening saw the dark side of a busy Fourth of July weekend.

Dozens of beer cans and other pieces of trash were strewn next to an overflowing trash can at the vacant fields.

It wasn’t on the scale of the Denver Civic Center trashing that recently grabbed headlines. But some residents who noticed the litter in Steamboat were irked.

Bud Light cans sat on the bleachers and empty beer boxes were on the ground.

Some of the garbage made a trail to a nearby sidewalk.

"It was a little disturbing to see such a beautiful place left like that," longtime Steamboat resident Dave Genchi said.

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Genchi snapped photos of the trash just after 6 p.m. while he was taking a walk with his wife to City Market on Sunday.

The field was booked for an adult Triple Crown Mountain Magic softball tournament earlier Sunday afternoon.

A schedule posted on the Triple Crown site for the tournament indicates the field was booked for men's adult games until 4 p.m. Sunday.

While he hadn't seen the trash himself, city of Steamboat Springs parks manager Craig Robinson said he had heard from park maintenance crews that the trash generated by the adult softball tournament was more abundant this past weekend than in previous years.

"It was a little worse than normal," Robinson said. "We did our best to play catch-up and keep up."

Robinson said firefighters at the nearby Mountain Fire Station also helped clean up the mess.

He suggested litter cleanup is more of a challenge citywide on the busy Fourth of July holiday, when local parks are visited by thousands of people.

"On the Fourth of July weekend, it seems like town is stretching its resources, and people are sometimes not throwing away their trash," Robinson said. "We just need people to throw away their trash."

Robinson said the city planned to touch base with Triple Crown about the litter situation at Ski Town fields.

"Their crews are great to work with," Robinson said of Triple Crown. "They are very supportive."

A call and email to a Triple Crown representative was not immediately returned Wednesday.

The city's ongoing contract with Triple Crown states that trash service will be provided by the city, but participants should bring all the trash from the dugouts to a trash can "except at the end of each day."

Some of the trash shown in Genchi's picture, including what appeared to be a mouth guard, went beyond the ball fields and down to a public sidewalk.

It wasn't clear how long it took for the trash to be cleaned up.

Residents will have a chance to help spruce up and clean up another cherished local amenity this week when Friends of the Yampa and other organizations host a river clean-up event.

The clean-up starts at 9 a.m. Saturday by the gazebo at Howelsen Hill park.

To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210, email scottfranz@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ScottFranz10