Monday's torrential rains caused the Missouri River to rise so much that the City of Omaha had to close NP Dodge Park effective immediately.
"The river rose fast today," Park Director Brook Bench says. "Since 6:00 or 7:00 it's gone up about four feet, and is expected to go up another couple of feet by tomorrow."
Bench says the river is approaching the 26 foot level. "Where we get a lot of standing water in the playground area, the soccer fields and public boat launch area." Bench says once the water levels retreat they will have to evaluate tree damage the park sustained.
"The ground is so saturated and with the strong winds that we are having we've had also some large trees that have came down in the park," Bench says two large Cottonwoods are among the trees that have fallen.
For the safety of the public, there are also areas of nearby Hummel Park that are closed due to fallen trees and debris. Bench says that includes the Joshua Street entrance off of John J. Pershing Drive.
"It's impassable, you can't get in there anyway because there are two big trees that are blocking it." Bench is encouraging people to stay away from the park until it can dry out and the winds die down.
Facility user groups, campground reservations, and contracted park users have been notified of the following closing.
It's not known how soon NP Dodge Park will be closed.