Sylvan Lake considering charcoal barbecue ban in parks

Too many people not disposing of hot coals properly

Sylvan Lake town staff recommending charcoal BBQ ban

The issue of charcoal barbecues in town parks is heating up in Sylvan Lake.

Due to a “significant increase” in the number of barbecuers dumping hot coals in parks and on the beach, town staff is recommending banning charcoal barbecues from all public parks. Currently, there are no regulations in place for barbecues.

“Due to the sheer number of picknickers during the summer months, barbecues have created operational challenges and potential safety concerns,” reads a report from parks manager Lee Furlotte.

“In addition, there have been complaints fielded from the public regarding groups taking up large portions of park space and leaving a mess of garbage and hot coals behind.”

Often barbecuers dump out their coals wherever they are set up, leaving potentially dangerous hot coals lying in the grass, on the beach or under trees and shrubs.

This is happening — and happening more often — even though there are disposal containers posted in parks.

Council was to consider the ban at its Monday evening meeting.

One option considered by staff was to allow charcoal barbecues in designated areas away from the beach and grassed areas.

However, that would be a difficult message to get out and would likely only reduce the problem not eliminate it, said staff.

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