From my email box:
I was out riding my bike this morning and I noticed this hazardous chain down at Riverdale Park.  It has recently been placed across a section of the road that approaches the pedestrian bridge access to the bike trail.  It was nearly invisible to me, on a bike, and I took a few pics of it.  As you might be able to see, there are 3 reflectors in the chain, but they hang horizontally due to the chain twisting over, so they do not show up.  Please note that this chain is also in the way of the access trail that many people use to get onto the bridge, since it is nearer to the road.
I had intended to call this in as a problem this morning to see what the Parks Department thought of it, and to ask that something more visible could be added or used instead.

It seems I was too late, and I was informed that the chain is now down, and that someone had already run into it.  You can imagine the hazard this will pose to anyone who attempts to ride through the park at night.
Please make a note of this hazard to your readers.  The Parks Department boss informed me that the chain would stay in place to block parking for peewee football games, and that they would add some more reflectors to it.
I often laugh when this city gets ‘awards’ for being a bike friendly town when the Parks Department does stupid crap like this, and drivers scream at you and swerve at you when riding your bike in the street. We are anything but friendly, we are ignorant when it comes to bicycling.

31 Thoughts on “Riverdale Park chain of death

  1. Testor15 on August 23, 2013 at 1:10 pm said:

    As a bike rider, how are you going to see a scrawny chainw with little reflectors. In a town which lives with orange cones everywhere, why not use them here?

  2. Or at least a large reflector STOP sign hanging from it.

  3. Testor15 on August 23, 2013 at 1:32 pm said:

    The park department would rather rather see yellow crime scene tape?

  4. Tom H. on August 23, 2013 at 1:56 pm said:

    Yeah, I’d say Sioux Falls is quite recreational-bike-friendly, but in terms of practical biking, the facilities leave a lot to be desired.

    This is a cool blog about a guy trying to live a practical bike lifestyle in Sioux Falls. Maybe he’s a poster on here?

  5. hornguy on August 23, 2013 at 4:08 pm said:

    Has the Parks Department heard of signs? Good luck to any cyclist trying to see that thing. Jeez. What’s terrifying is that someone actually put that up thinking it was a good solution to a problem…

  6. anonymous on August 23, 2013 at 6:09 pm said:

    I live near this park.

    I wonder if the chain has more to do with people dumping their household trash (including mattresses) in the Novak bins you see in the background of the pictures.

    This is a very out-of-the-way park.

    The SFPD needs to do more to patrol it. And I’m not referring to the household trash when I say that!

  7. Lemming on August 23, 2013 at 10:42 pm said:

    I think the PD patrols the parks pretty good! Everytime I drive by a park I see like 2 of them tucked away in the back corners of the parks “watching” for hours at a time!

  8. Lemming, is there a FREE hospital buffet or FREE Mac’d’s coffee near by? Makes sense.

  9. anonymous on August 24, 2013 at 9:20 am said:


    I see the same thing….

    Only problem……. it’s always in the middle of the day when almost no one is in the park.

    They need to take their “extended” breaks in the evening when all the legal/illegal activity is happening in Riverdale Park!!!!!!!

    And, to your point Lewis, since when can we afford to have THREE patrol cars parked AT THE SAME TIME at the McDonald’s at 10th and Fairfax!!?!!

    Happens on a regular basis early in the morning……

  10. Bond Perilous on August 24, 2013 at 9:53 am said:

    I work in the public sector. My boss is always saying, “Provide the level of service as if we had competitors breathing down our necks.” Apparently the City of SF — the Parks Dept. in particular — has a different attitude.

  11. Yeah, they just take their competitors out with a chrome chain across their necks.

  12. grudznick on August 24, 2013 at 7:30 pm said:

    Somebody needs to wrap some distastefull stuff in that chain or walk in there with a bolt cutter and perform a public service.

    I say, your town seems absolutely insaner than ever. What kind of a moron would hang a chain like that?

  13. grudznick on August 24, 2013 at 7:31 pm said:

    I would like to meet this moron. If she or he posts here to Mr. E, he can set up a breakfast meeting.

  14. It could also be bad for somebody that was jogging.

  15. Anooner on August 24, 2013 at 9:55 pm said:

    They should put something up people can see, that prohibits vehicles but lets bikes pass around. Doesn’t seem that difficult.

  16. Bob Meister on August 24, 2013 at 10:05 pm said:

    Can’t you find something important to bitch about?

  17. anonymous on August 25, 2013 at 9:55 am said:

    I was in the Park this morning. (Sunday)

    The Parks Department has NOT addressed the chain, in spite of the fact that there are park employees stopping by several times a day to check the restroom etc.

    The chain is down and laying across the entire road. If the Director says it has been addressed, it seems strange that the chain was not removed from the road
    where it is definitely creating a HAZARD!

    Also, when you look closer at the Park you will see multiple banks of lighting for the football fields.

    FOR SAFETY, the entire park has one pole with two lights mounted on it.

    Does this mean the football fields take priority over the public’s SAFETY?

  18. anon – yes, special interests get whatever they want in this town, you know that. BTW, still waiting for Jr. Football to pony up on their end of the deal.

    Bob, I guess getting clotheslined by a chain at night on your bike isn’t real high on your priority list, but it concerns me a bit.

  19. anominous on August 25, 2013 at 4:38 pm said:


    Would you care if a bike trail cop hit this with his motorcycle?

  20. Maybe we should start bitching about all those neglected bridges you rubber stamped as being safe Bob Meister. Oh that’s right… Bob doesn’t give a shit about safety.

  21. Print up a plastic sign that says “Mayor Mike’s Chain-O-Death” and fasten it to the chain. Add some reflectors front and rear just to be safe.

    Munson got his name on that nice little gateway to the falls thing on Philips… it only seems fair that MMM gets his name on something too.

  22. anonymous on August 26, 2013 at 5:06 pm said:

    Monday, August 25th, 1:00 p.m.

    The chain is back up. No changes made to make it more visible.

    One of most important elements in public parks for safety is lighting.

    Riverdale Park:

    17 poles with 6 floodlights each for a total of 102 floodlights FOR THE FOOTBALL FIELDS. (only turned on during games and practices)

    For the large parking lot and the public’s safety: ONE POLE WITH TWO LIGHTS MOUNTED ON IT.

  23. anonymous on August 26, 2013 at 5:07 pm said:

    correction to previous post:

    Monday, August 26th

  24. OldSlewFoot on August 26, 2013 at 7:16 pm said:

    They don’t use Riverdale Park for Pee Wee Football anymore anyway, right? Maybe that is why the chain is up.

  25. anonymous on August 26, 2013 at 8:32 pm said:

    Lewis, I don’t know who sent you the e-mail that included this comment:

    The Parks Department boss informed me that the chain would stay in place to block parking for peewee football games, and that they would add some more reflectors to it.

    But, tonite, the chain is temporarily down to provide parking for the football games that are taking place throughout the park.

    So, what is the real purpose of this hazard?

  26. anonymous on August 26, 2013 at 8:35 pm said:

    OldSlewFoot on 08.26.13 at 7:16 pm

    They don’t use Riverdale Park for Pee Wee Football anymore anyway, right? Maybe that is why the chain is up.

    South Dakota Junior Football has relocated to their 6 million dollar fields at the Sanford Sports Complex.

    Riverdale Park is now being used by flag football (per Director Kearney).

  27. OldSlewFoot on August 27, 2013 at 11:26 am said:

    Thanks anon, I wondered what all that wonderful green grass at Riverdale was now used for. At least it is being used for some good activities. Both my sons played pee-wee football there.

  28. anonymous on August 27, 2013 at 1:48 pm said:


    The chain is GONE (for now, at least).

  29. That’s because the AL was going to do a story about it.

  30. anonymous on August 27, 2013 at 4:41 pm said:

    The AL has done a story about it.

    Heard it in the Halls – blog

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