Park Service sees uptick in graffiti on Blue Ridge Parkway

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BLUE RIDGE PARKWAY, Va. (WDBJ7) There’s nothing like a sunny afternoon on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Some come for the beautiful views of nature.

Or to enjoy a ride through the mountaintops.

But others want to leave a mark.

“We’ve noticed an uptick in graffiti up and down the parkway, the entire 469-mile length of it," says Kurt Speers, Ridge District Ranger for the Blue Ridge Parkway, "Including the areas around Waynesboro and Roanoke and Lexington.”

Mostly it’s “tagging” on signs.

“And it’s not just signs," Speers explains. "We’ve had it on the Appalachian Trail, on some of our Blue Ridge Parkway trails. On rocks, on overpasses, underpasses – anywhere that there’s a surface, we’ve found this stuff.”

Stuff that somebody has to clean up, a time consuming and expensive process.

“It’s something that our maintenance staff and volunteers from organizations like Friends of the Blue Ridge Parkway are struggling to keep up and make repairs and get ready for the busy season coming up,” Speers says.

And they will prosecute when they identify the culprit. In one case, he was found when a bragging Facebook post of the graffiti was reported to the Park Service.

Speers says, “We have a very vigorous visiting public who cares about these lands and cares about the sites they visit, and they don’t want to see this sort of thing going on. So we do get it reported to us through the public quite often.”

The rangers welcome the public's help. You can call them at 828-298-2491, on drop a message on their Blue Ridge Parkway Facebook page: