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City of Rogers parks

 
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JJnTJ
Geocacher


Joined: 23 Aug 2010

Posts: 218

PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2010 12:09 pm    Post subject: City of Rogers parks Reply with quote

My wife and I decided to hide our first cache in a park near our home in Rogers. Before doing it, I decided to contact the Rogers Parks department.

Turns out they're still a little gunshy since the bomb scare incident three years ago. I have been in contact with the Recreation and Facilities manager, who has said that
Quote:
I am requesting that the Rogers Park Board take up a policy similar to what Ramsey County has in place that will allow it but just not yet. The park board next meets in November and then I will contact you.


I've offered to help with information in any way that I can, and figured I'd put it up for comment here. I tend to communicate exactly the wrong idea whenever I write more than 10 words, so here's hoping my short emails haven't convinced them to outlaw geocaching forever. Rolling Eyes Razz
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Pear Head
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 04 Apr 2004

Posts: 5692

PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2010 12:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I cannot encourage you strongly enough to pass your contact's information to the MnGCA board. The board has a lot of experience on working with park districts and can turn a poor or even decent policy into a win win for both sides.
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Pear Head
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 04 Apr 2004

Posts: 5692

PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2010 12:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also, FWIW, the Ramsey policy is horrible on multiple levels, mostly that it's a registration policy and has a HALF MILE limit between caches. It's about as out of date as they come.
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JJnTJ
Geocacher


Joined: 23 Aug 2010

Posts: 218

PostPosted: Fri Oct 22, 2010 1:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, Pear Head. I forwarded the email chain to board@mngca.org.

I'm grateful to have skilled advocates. If there's anything I can do to help out, please let me know.
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JJnTJ
Geocacher


Joined: 23 Aug 2010

Posts: 218

PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 10:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Park board has sent me some draft proposals, and they seem much better. It looks like they're allowing a .1 mile radius, and none of the other restrictions seem too onerous.

There's a meeting of the park board on November 16 at 5:15pm at the Rogers Activity Center (near the high school). I'm going to try to make that if I can get free from work in time.
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Pear Head
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 04 Apr 2004

Posts: 5692

PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 12:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Can you post the draft here?
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JJnTJ
Geocacher


Joined: 23 Aug 2010

Posts: 218

PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 1:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's the draft policy (I also forwarded copies to the MnGCA board):

Quote:
Geocaching is initiated by an individual hiding a cache; this can be a waterproof container with small items inside or a magnetic identification dot, then recording the location with a Global Positioning Unit (GPS). The individual then posts the GPS coordinates along with a description of the cache on the Geocaching website: www.geocaching.com. Other individuals then try to find the cache. When it is located, participants sign a log book, then take or leave a small item. They also post their find on the online logbook.

The City of Rogers wants to encourage positive use of its parks and feels that geocaching can be a good recreational activity in the parks with the following restrictions.

Geocaching Guidelines within Rogers Parks

1. Geocaching is permitted in specific parks and conservation areas of the City of Rogers with an approved permit.
2. Caches must be registered with the City of Rogers Parks and Recreation Department. Complete a Geocache Site Registration Permit Application and submit.
3. Caches must have the name of the cache on the exterior.
4. Park use hours (6 a.m. 10 p.m.) apply to those hiding or seeking a cache.
5. Caches must not be buried.
6. Caches cannot contain items that are offensive, dangerous or perishable.
7. Caches must be at least 1/10 mile or 528 feet apart.
8. Unregistered caches will be removed by the City of Rogers.
9. The City of Rogers reserves the right to remove caches that are causing undue impact on park habitat.
10. Caches are not permitted in play areas, beaches (Future), or off-leash dog use areas (Future).
11. Caches will not be permitted in the following park areas:
Rogers Community Center
Rogers Activity Center
12. Caches within the following conservation areas must be located within 25 feet of an established trail: (none listed yet)


The registration form has a recap of these rules on it, plus these fields to fill out:

Quote:
Cache Name:
(should include park name)

Park:

Coordinates:

Distance to next closest cache:

Cache Owner:

Geocache Handle:

E-mail:

Phone:

Date placed:

Container:



They may not realize how rigorously Groundspeak enforces the .1 mile rule. We've never placed a cache, but it sounds like GC.com won't allow within .1 mile except in extremely unusual circumstances (like two caches on opposite banks of a river). Maybe that can be discussed at the meeting.
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Pear Head
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 04 Apr 2004

Posts: 5692

PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 1:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's my take, short and sweet.

#1 says specific parks but the policy doesn't highlight which parks those are (other than to exclude some with #11). IMHO #1 is redundant and could be removed - the policy says the same things without it.

I still don't understand why parks want to go through a application/permit system and increase their workload...

#3 is hard to do on small and micros, nor am I sure of its value - if you stumble across a cache you're likely to know which one it is simply by looking up its coordinates. If they want to be able to identify it as a geocache then just require the word geocache (like the state forests do). I'd start though by wondering why the requirement is there in the first place.

The policy overall looks decent - I'm never fond of registration policies so I'm curious what they are looking for by requiring registration - often those needs can be met without requiring registration.

I'm also curious what a magnetic identification dot is...
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bflentje
Geocacher


Joined: 29 May 2006

Posts: 4032

PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 2:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rats, I was going to bury a new geocache in Rogers and now I can't.
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Mrs. Mizzou
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 31 Oct 2007

Posts: 614

PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 3:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm available to attend the meeting on Tuesday, but am unable to get the actual Agenda off their website. Let me know if you need me.
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EPMinnesota
Past MnGCA Board


Joined: 13 Apr 2006

Posts: 1942

PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 4:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When we were drafting the Eden Prairie Parks policy they had been going through a lot of renovation in the parks. One of the concerns was that if someone had a cache placed and they were going to work in that area, they could contact the cache owner so they could remove it until the work was completed. I have no problem with not having a cache destroyed due to construction! The permit process leaves much to be desired although our Park guy has gotten much better lately. We had permits approved for the fall event caches in record time!
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JJnTJ
Geocacher


Joined: 23 Aug 2010

Posts: 218

PostPosted: Fri Nov 12, 2010 4:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I didn't understand the magnetic ID dot thing either; maybe they read an article about the Garmin Chirps. Confused

The labeling and registration are probably so that the bomb squad incident doesn't happen again. The Lloyd family's cache was registered with the city but the police never checked with the Parks department before blowing it up. It'll be difficult to put a label on the blinky I was indending to place, but it's hard to imagine people getting all excited about it.

There is nothing that says registration must occur before the cache can be placed, which gives me hope it won't be a hindrance.


Mrs. Mizzou, I would be delighted to have anyone attend that can provide any sort of advocacy. My communication skills aren't great, so more experienced and eloquent voices can only help.
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Pear Head
Past MnGCA President


Joined: 04 Apr 2004

Posts: 5692

PostPosted: Sat Nov 13, 2010 9:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:

There is nothing that says registration must occur before the cache can be placed, which gives me hope it won't be a hindrance.


#1 says you can place a cache with an approved permit. That indicates registration is required before placing the cache to me.
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Nitro_R/T
Geocacher


Joined: 17 Aug 2008

Posts: 22

PostPosted: Thu Nov 18, 2010 11:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What ever came of the meeting? Do I need to go and get a permit to keep my one cache active? If so, where do you get the permits?
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JJnTJ
Geocacher


Joined: 23 Aug 2010

Posts: 218

PostPosted: Thu Nov 18, 2010 1:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nothing is decided yet.

MrsMizzou did a fine presentation in front of the board, and someone from the MnGCA had already contacted them (thank you!). The board seemed receptive and grateful for the extra information, and had a lot of questions. They weren't very invested in the registration idea to begin with, and MrsMizzou helped discourage them further.

The board did not give a date for when they'll make their decision. They mentioned wanting to talk it over with the Rogers PD.

My communication with them has been very good; they return emails pretty quickly and tend to get back to me when they say they'll get back to me. If I don't hear anything in the next couple of weeks, I'll probably poke them.
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