Signs hang on the wood gazebos in Mission Bay Park informing park goers that beginning October 1, shade provided by the picnic gazebos is no longer free.
Starting in October, picnic shelters located in East Bonita, East Vacation, Hospitality Point, Marie Starns South Shores, North Crown Point, North De Anza, North Ski Beach, North Tecolote, Playa Pacifica II, and South Tecolote open-space parks will no longer be available on a first-come, first-served basis, but instead they must be reserved ahead of time for a fee of $20 per hour.
In addition to the $20-an-hour fee, a security deposit may be required, depending on the number of people indicated on the permit.
Before, Mission Bay Park was the only community park in the city that did not charge park goers to use the gazebo; however, that ended when the city council approved charging fees for the picnic shelters during a council meeting this past June.
And while some residents view the new permit and reservation policy as a better opportunity to reserve the gazebo for weddings and large family gatherings, others see the required reservation and the $20-per-hour permit fee as another example of the city charging citizens for everything under the sun.
"Now, only rich people can use the gazebo," said one frequent Mission Bay Park visitor who was upset about the new requirements. "And, us poor folk will just have to bake in the sun.
"Now if you want to come to the park to throw your 7-year-old a birthday party, you're going to have to pay for it. How ridiculous is that?"