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Spinners given a cold welcome

Town apologizes after group kicked from Crossings gazebo

A few local spinners were kicked out of The Crossings of Colonie gazebo Saturday, June 22, for not having a permit.

A few local spinners were kicked out of The Crossings of Colonie gazebo Saturday, June 22, for not having a permit. Photo by Zan Strumfeld.

— Colonie resident Aaron Bush often strolls through The Crossings of Colonie as part of his exercise routine. Every once in a while, he brings his dogs to the 130-acre public park or visits the weekend farmers market.

He’s also an avid spinner, using a wheel to turn wool into yarn in his free time. Bush decided to call up some of his friends to meet him at the park Saturday, June 22, for a nice, early morning of conversation and spinning. The group assembled together with their spinning wheels under the park’s gazebo, facing the pond.

“I didn’t think it would be a big deal for us to just get together and spin for a little while and maybe hit the farmers market,” Bush said.

As the morning grew warmer and the small group enjoyed the shade of the gazebo, a park staff member drove up to the spinners on a golf cart.

“Literally his first words out of his mouth were, ‘What are you doing?’ in a tone that sort of set us in this weird mood,” Bush said.

Bush said the man told the group they needed a permit to sit under the gazebo, even though there was no sign hanging in the gazebo saying so and they were the only group in it. Bewildered, the spinners moved away from the gazebo, finding shade on the grass nearby. The gazebo stared back at them, completely empty.

“It’s one thing to not know the rules and explain the rules to someone, but we were barked at. That’s literally what it was. Our issue is not that the park requires a permit to use the gazebo, it’s that it wasn’t clearly posted,” Bush said.

Bush said he later checked out the park’s website, and it is not clear that a permit is required, either. It is stated that “groups over 20 must obtain a permit” and “use of facilities and pavilions at The Crossings requires a permit.”

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