Weston park closed as potentially dangerous bacteria left behind by receding floodwaters

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WESTON, Mo. -- Life has slowly returned to normal in Weston after severe flooding hit the historic town along the Missouri River in late March.

But now the receding floodwater is creating a new issue, shutting down the city park.

"For the biggest part of a week, we were sitting in stagnant four-foot of water," Rick Stout of the Weston Park Board explained. "Find out we have bacteria and other contaminants in the park that is simply not safe."

Stout said the bacteria found in the grass and playground mulch might be harmful to young children, so they're following Centers for Disease Control recommendations and closing the park between 30 and 90 days.

Laura Landon owns a coffee shop in downtown and noticed the signs go up this week. She said the park is a popular place in the spring and looks forward to using the space again.

"From a safety standpoint we are glad they are taking the precautions and doing it the right way to make sure people can get back into it when it is safe," she said.

"We have kids out here for Apple Fest, and things like that throughout the year, so it is an important, vital part of the community. So we hope it will be back soon."

Until that time, Stout said the rest of the town is back open and ready for the new season. They plan to evaluate the status of the park during the next 30 days to find the best time to reopen.

The town originally scheduled an Easter egg hunt at the park, but because of the health concerns, the location has been moved to Benner Park, on the south edge of 45 Highway on West Platte R-2 School District property. It's been rescheduled for April 20.

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