What's that old saying, "It just takes a few bad apples to spoil the bunch?" WFSB 3 has reported that the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) recently made the decision to prohibit alcohol at six Connecticut recreational areas, including state parks, until August 25, 2021. The list includes the following:

  • Gardner Lake State Park - Salem
  • George Waldo State Park - Southbury
  • Wadsworth Falls State Park - Middletown/Middlefield
  • Lake Waramaug State Park - New Preston
  • Quaddick State Park - Thompson
  • Beach Pond Boat Launch - Voluntown
  • Pachaug State Forest (within 500 yards inland from the Beach Pond shoreline)

Why did DEEP put the kibosh on alcohol? Partiers want to party, especially after being cooped up for over a year. With pandemic social restrictions loosening up, for many, it was time to let the games begin.

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For some, those games included large crowds getting hammered together, which has the potential for idiotic unruly behavior, throwing state park picnic tables into the water, and ruining that relaxing park-like atmosphere for the rest of us trying to have some civilized family fun.

Officer Elise Bouthillier with DEEP said it best, "Fights, rowdiness, assaults, boating under the influence, fights, and the domestic dispute is no way to spend a summer afternoon at a CT state park."

Squantz Pond State Park (October 2019) - Ethan Carey
Squantz Pond State Park (October 2019) - Ethan Carey

I can personally attest to that. Approximately 20 years ago, Mindy, our daughter Allie and I enjoyed a Sunday afternoon picnic at Squantz Pond State Park. Three picnic tables down from where we were sitting, a family of six were having a grand old time sucking down Bud Lights like they were water and smoking joints while playing a never-ending set of the Wu-Tang Clan.

Once Mindy had enough, she politely walked over and asked this motley crew if they could bring the volume down because it was bothering other picnickers.  A bunch of loud expletives met her request. Luckily, another picnic table close by with three jacked-up dudes heard the commotion and came walking over.

These guys told them they were rude and if they didn't knock it off, they were going to take their boom box and throw it in Squantz Pond. When the table of six began laughing at these three guys, one of the dudes swept in, grabbed the boom box and heaved it into Squantz Pond.

As the FU's started to fly, we packed up and got out of there as quickly as possible. Scenarios like this is one of the reasons DEEP has decided to ban alcohol at six Connecticut State Parks.

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