This spring is going to be an unusually busy time at Kingwood’s athletic fields and parks based on reports from the sports groups at the Feb. 3 Kingwood Service Association (KSA) Parks Committee meeting.

If increased participation in outdoor sports is any indication, people are emerging from two years of COVID-19 frustrations by getting outdoors and into Kingwood’s organized sports in record numbers.

“All is good. Just like fall was, spring is going to be maybe our biggest numbers ever. I call it the post Covid effect,” Mark Zylker of Kingwood Alliance Soccer said.

The same is happening with baseball.

“We are starting our spring season of this year right around Valentine’s Day. This will be our biggest season, so we are looking forward to another good year,” Brian Smith of the Kingwood Adult Softball Association said. He explained that before it all begins, they will be doing minor maintenance and trimming on the fields. In addition, a few trees will be cut back in the immediate field areas.

Kevin Allums of the Kingwood Girls Softball Association reported similarly. “We just finished our registration and just like everybody else, we got big numbers. I think we ended up with 212 kids in our recreational league and five or six competitive teams so we’re dealing with about, give or take, 300 kids. So busy, busy, busy,” he said.

The committee addressed the ongoing issue of nonresident use of park facilities and parking at Deer Ridge Park, especially around the tennis and basketball courts. Maryalice of Kingwood Association Management (KAM), KSA’s administrative services company, explained they have put up new signs prohibiting nonresident use and the requirement for “K” stickers on resident vehicles as in River Grove Park. However, Ethel McCormick of KAM, explained the enforcement policies and practices up to this point, compared to River Grove, is not enforced as frequently or routinely by the contract towing company. She explained the company routinely treats River Grove Park as the priority.

“We can call on them anytime, but they are just not going there every day like they do in River Grove. So, we can call them to go immediately to Deer Ridge if we have issues,” McCormick said.

In response to McCormick’s explanation, one of the committee members explained that a Kingwood resident and representative in his village homeowner’s association had recently called the towing company and was advised by the person he spoke to that they cannot go to Deer Ridge Park to enforce the KSA’s parking rules. McCormick advised she would immediately call the company and clarify the contract and the expectations of KSA. She will also point out that towing trucks can and should patrol through Deer Ridge Park occasionally, especially at times in the afternoons and evenings when the violations seem to be occurring most often.

McCormick also called attention to an earlier than expected increase in feral hog reports from Kingwood residents.

“We’ve had reports from Royal Shores where they are now most active. Jan. 3, they reported on Royal Creek, a sow and piglets were sighted. Then on Jan. 22, Royal Shores residents reported hog damage on the slopes of the Court patio home area. Then the same day we got the same reports again so there was obviously more damage done there. On Jan. 31, a Kings Point resident reported damage along Redwood Bridge and Feb. 1 Royal Shores residents reported damage at the Royal Shores Pier Park area,” McCormick said. All the reports were immediately sent to the KSA contracted hunters.

“Garcia responded he would go to inspect the large, wooded area on the east side of the pier,” McCormick said. Garcia thought it very possible the hogs were bedding down in that area and coming out to do the damage in the park area at night.

Coincidentally, the committee’s last order of business was to renew the contract for the two hog hunters KSA subsidizes to hunt and remove hogs in its land areas based on the reports KSA receives. Price said, “The contracts expire at the end of March, and asked the committee to renew them with no changes.” The committee unanimously agreed. The two contracts total $425 a month. Geraldo Garcia and his partner concentrate more on the East End Park and Royal Shore areas while Mike Bowlen concentrates on KSA areas around the golf courses and Houston County Flood Control areas where he also has permission to hunt.

KSA Parks Committee meetings are open to the public and are held on the first Thursday of each month at 7 p.m. at the South Woodland Hills Community Room. However, due to COVID-19 they are expected to be conducted until further notice as a Zoom conference. Contact KSA at 281-358-5192 the day before planning to attend to confirm it is a Zoom meeting and arrange for joining it.

Bruce Olson
Author: Bruce OlsonEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Columnist
I have been married since 1970 to Kerry, my best friend and a great Australian woman. I served and survived Vietnam in the U.S. Air Force. I fought forest fires in the summer while in college, where I earned a B.A. in economics from Oklahoma State University and an M.B.A. from the University of Texas. I retired from Continental Airlines. I have a son and two granddaughters in Kingwood, and a daughter and two grandsons on a farm near Mazabuka, Zambia. I am now enjoying life as a grandfather, Tribune correspondent and Humble ISD guest teacher when not traveling to Zambia or Australia.

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