This week, news broke that the Milwaukee Parks Department was in a mild turf war with Pokemon Go, sending a letter to Niantic, the company behind the game, about permits for using Lake Park and the rest of the park system. The responses from the Parks Department and the County Executive's office were similar: They like Pokemon Go, and they like people going to our parks, but they'd also appreciate a little more order and responsibility on the company's part for the sake of the parks and surrounding communities.
Today, County Executive Chris Abele released an additional statement in the hopes of clarifying their stance on Pokemon Go and reasoning behind the original letter. It's fairly identical to what his office and the Parks Department said yesterday – just this time, with an incredible amount of puns. We're talking Gene Shalit levels of punnery coming from the "Milwaukee County Exeggutor."
Here's the statement – titled "We WANT You to Pika-choose Milwaukee County Parks" – and if you want, make it a fun game and take a drink at every Pokemon pun:
"I believe strongly that access to public spaces inspires passion for parks as a part of people’s daily lives, helps promote a strong sense of community, and encourages learning and stewardship. From expanding our beer gardens to bringing futsal to Wisconsin, it’s always been our Instinct to enhance Milwaukee County’s award-winning Parks System and create opportunities to welcome more people to our Parks whenever possible.
"That’s why I was discouraged by recent reports that created some confusion around the County’s position on Pokémon GO.
"We’ve enjoyed watching the Pokémon GO phenomenon take off in our County parks. Pokémon GO has brought thousands of new users into our parks at events like our Poke-nic in Mitchell Park and just by visiting Pokestops all throughout the County.
"While these parks visitors new and old are welcome additions, and most are respectful of our shared public spaces, the increase in traffic has unfortunately come with some bad park-use etiquette that harms the Prestige level of our system and leads to problems for neighbors who’ve chosen to make their homes near County parks.
"I believe that the County’s PokéCoins should be spent investing in new amenities everyone can enjoy, expanding our Urban Parks Initiative and upgrading more parks to be ADA accessible – not on additional park patrols and clean-up crews necessitated by a few bad Krabbies who won’t pick up their Muk. That’s why we’ve asked Niantic, the developer of Pokémon GO, to simply follow our documented permitting process for geocaching so that they can share in the responsibility of maintaining these spaces. It’s not a Mystic request; more than 400 local users have applied for and received these permits over the past eight years, and we think large corporations should be held to the same standards.
"To be clear, simply playing Pokémon GO doesn’t require a permit – that would be Tentacruel to ask of people who are just trying to get outside and explore our parks. Milwaukee County Parks are open, and we want more people to Pika-choose them today and every day."
In other words, he says Ditto to everything said by parks and county officials yesterday (two can play this game). According to Parks Director John Dargle, Jr. as of yesterday, Niantic had not responded to the County's letter, so we'll see where this modest feud continues from here. But at least perhaps Abele's Poke-punning power persuaded some people to politely put down their pitchforks.
As much as it is a gigantic cliché to say that one has always had a passion for film, Matt Mueller has always had a passion for film. Whether it was bringing in the latest movie reviews for his first grade show-and-tell or writing film reviews for the St. Norbert College Times as a high school student, Matt is way too obsessed with movies for his own good.
When he's not writing about the latest blockbuster or talking much too glowingly about "Piranha 3D," Matt can probably be found watching literally any sport (minus cricket) or working at - get this - a local movie theater. Or watching a movie. Yeah, he's probably watching a movie.