Vandals have once more caused problems at otherwise pristine Reservoir Park in New Milford.

A wooden gate installed at the entrance to the park's spillway was spray-painted with graffiti in April, just days after New Milford Public Works had installed it.

Large boulders by the upper parking area were also spray-painted in the night by vandals.

Members of the Friends of the Reservoir are disheartened by the continual damage done at the park by a small few, according to Sally Talarico, volunteer coordinator with the group.

"Public Works put up this beautiful fence to go along with the gazebo, installed as an Eagle Scout project, and this happened," Talarico said. "It took volunteers hours and hours of sandblasting to clean the paint off."

"These (vandals) think they're being cool, when what they're doing is proving they're idiots," one blogger wrote about the vandalism.

The recent annual cleanup at Reservoir Park resulted in collecting numerous bags of garbage and even buckets of motor oil from the grounds, Talarico added.

Since Reservoir Park was created in 2006 in the Second Hill section of town, the Friends of the Reservoir have created walking trails around the lake, installed trail signs, nature information signs and kiosks on the 172-acre property.

Eagle Scout projects have built bridges and a boat dock.

Since early 2007, vandals have destroyed signs, damaged bridges, torn apart the plastic-covered bulletin board on the kiosk and burned the photos in it, among other damage.

Patrols by New Milford police are regularly occurring in the upper and lower parking areas.

Talarico is asking visitors to the park to keep their eyes open and report any vandalism.

-- Susan Tuz