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"Hidden" graffiti targets kids at an Idaho Falls playground

By Stephanie Hale-Lopez
Published On: Jul 24 2013 07:44:07 PM CDT

In Idaho Falls alone, 32 parks in the city limits give taggers a large canvas.

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho -

City parks get tagged with a disheartening amount of graffiti and vandalism almost daily.

In Idaho Falls alone, 32 parks in the city limits give taggers a large canvas. 

Nothing beats a day at the park for 7-year-old Ava; she said the slides are her favorite. 

So when she noticed something a little strange on the playground at Esquire Park in Idaho Falls, she wondered what it meant. 

"I saw it down the slide," said Ava.

Looking at the playground, you wouldn't notice any graffiti or vandalism; but the taggers made sure to leave their mark in the one place kids would definitely see it -- inside the slide. 

Hidden away for only children to see, most adults wouldn't notice it. 

But with a quick trip down the slide, the damage was obvious. The black lettering stands out over the bright colors. 

Ava's older cousin, Alexis Butts, didn't notice and says it's concerning that the graffiti isn't visible to parents. 

"I think it's a shame it's on a kids playground," said Butts. "I think that it's also more of a shame that it's on the inside of a slide because then adults don't see it and they don't know that their kids are seeing it."

Idaho Falls Parks and Recreation director, Greg Weitzel, wanted to see the damage for himself. 

"Somebody went down with a sharpie marker and made little notes...everything from some bad words to 'I love somebody,'" said Weitzel. "They've tagged the top and we usually get those spots but pretty creative to tag inside the slide. They must've stopped themselves in the middle but we'll clean it up."

And Ava hopes it'll get clean  

"I think it should be clean so it can look nice," said Ava. 

Weitzel said crews do come out to the parks to check up on them, but since the graffiti here was hidden, they missed it. 

Weitzel also said the graffiti shouldn't take long to clean up and they probably won't have to paint over it. 

If you notice any damage to parks in Idaho Falls, contact the parks department at 612-8480. 

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