Ask and you shall receive improvements, kinda. Back in June, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), asked the National Park Service to do better for the locals, and for the parks they maintain in the National Capital Area. As of last week, the National Park Service unveiled a local portal that seems laid out in a gentler and more user-friendly way. There is a direct number where you can call and
complain find out what is going with your local park, for instance: (202) 673-2402. For emergencies, you call Park Police, at 202-610-7500.
There is also a FAQ section, should you need to know that no explosives are allowed at the park, that your party or protest of 25 or more people needs a permit, that the National Park Service is supposed to shovel your local park…. sometimes, and other sundries.
At the bottom of the FAQ, you can find an interactive map that takes you to the different area parks. You can also find a list of parks and the same interactive menu by clicking here. Del. Norton voiced her opinion that there should also be categories for trash pickup and pest control, and I agree.
Not sure if this is redundant or just by-product of moving sites around, but you can find the Capitol Hill parks portal here: https://www.nps.gov/cahi/contacts.htm (and maybe we can get CaHi trending as a sexy neighborhood name?? j/k), and the National Capital East parks portal here: https://www.nps.gov/nace/contacts.htm . Depending on where you click, our local parks seem to be administered by either branch. Good luck with that.
Strangely, though, the Twitter account called @DCParksEastNPS has been taken offline. It seems that #ConnectWithYourParkUsers, though long and cumbersome, might have to be the hashtag we’ll have to employ should we want the local park management to sit up and take notice. Because seriously– does anyone use the phone for actual voice stuff these days?
Anyway, onward and upward, National Park Service! We look forward to calling you on your cell phone, late night when we need you to get things done.