Anonymous letters tell Vancouver Island family their kids are too loud

Jaret, Samantha, Maddox and Gavin Jones of Columbia Beach. (Submitted photo)
The first anonymous letter that came to the Jones’ door. (Submitted photo)
Sam, Maddox, Gavin and Jaret Jones. (Submitted photo)
Gavin and Maddox playing. (Submitted photo)
Maddox and Gavin. (Submitted photo)

Jaret Jones says his children, like most others, enjoy playing outside and sometimes even make a little noise.

So Jones, who has lived in the Columbia Beach area near Parksville for approximately a year, says he was quite surprised to recently receive letters calling that noise “unbearable.”

“You have no doubt, realized that you moved into a neighbourhood of retired people. Do you hear any noise from anyone else? I didn’t think so,” read part of the first letter.

RELATED: Langford has ‘no plans’ to make changes to Western Speedway after noise complaints

In the last month, Jones has looked through his mail and found two postmarked, anonymous letters. Both titled, “Re: Your Noisy Children,” they outline how the noise Jones’s children make while playing in the backyard is making it impossible for the authors to enjoy their own outdoor space.

Jones has two children, aged seven and 10, who have been playing in the backyard a lot during COVID-19 quaratine restrictions. The two boys jump on the trampoline, swim in the pool and hang out in the yard.

“I’ve had bad neighbours before; these people don’t know what bad neighbours and noisy neighbours are if they’re complaining about kids playing,” he said. “We’re not drinking until 3 a.m. and smashing stuff.”

He’s not sure who sent the letter, and went and talked to his neighbours, who said they also had experience with similar complaints.

“In that neighbourhood, it echoes, I have to say that,” he said. “I talked with our immediate neighbours, and they have all encountered either having bylaws called on them for dogs or anything – there’s a lot of neighbourhood watchdogs that have nothing else to do.”

The City of Parksville said they haven’t received any formal noise bylaw complaints related to children recently. However, there is someone in an over-55 complex who calls routinely about the sound of children playing, according to the bylaws department.

When asked if he thinks his children are especially loud, Jones said not more than other youngsters who also play in the neighbourhood.

“It could be other kids in the neighbourhood as well, there’s other people that have kids or families visiting,” he said. “They used us as a scapegoat, I guess.”

READ MORE: Parksville man says summer concerts are too loud

Jones said his children, 10-year-old Maddox and 7-year-old Gavin, were annoyed to hear about the letters.

“My seven-year-old wrote post-it notes that he wants to send back to them that says they’re being bossy,” he said.

Jones said nothing like this has ever happened to his family – that the letter caught them completely off guard. At first, he said he was upset that they were targeted since there are numerous families with children in the neighbourhood. Ultimately, he said he realized it was part of what he sees as a larger problem in the area.

“It does kind of highlight an issue in the community here, with the mixture of young and old not always gelling,” he said. “The neighbourhoods go through kind of a cycle… our kids are gonna grow up and leave and we’re going to be the old people sitting on the porch getting angry at kids, I don’t know.”

In terms of if he thinks he and wife Samantha will be sending letters a couple of decades down the line, he said, “I hope not,” with a laugh.

For more news from Vancouver Island and beyond delivered daily into your inbox, please click here.

cloe.logan@pqbnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter 

CoronavirusParksville

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The candidates for the Mid Island-Pacific Rim riding in the 2020 provincial election. Clockwise from top left: Rob Clarke, Graham Hughes, Evan Jolicoeur, Helen Poon and Josie Osborne. Osborne was declared the winner on Saturday night. (Photos submitted )
POLL QUESTION: Are you happy with the results of B.C.’s provincial election?

Josie Osborne of the BC NDP and Tofino’s now-former mayor won the Mid Island - Pacific Rim seat.

Ucluelet RCMP detachment. (Westerly file photo)
Driver facing charges after crashing into pedestrian at Ucluelet crosswalk

“It’s a reminder to slow down and pay attention,” said Sgt. Steve Mancini.

Josie Osborne and her campaign team watch the results roll in during B.C.’s provincial election on Saturday night. (Photo courtesy of Josie Osborne)
Tofino expected to wait until New Year to elect new mayor after Josie Osborne wins provincial seat

Josie Osborne is the West Coast’s new MLA and that means Tofino needs a new mayor.

Dylan Hillis preparing collagen samples from ancient dog bones at the UBC musuem of Anthropology. Photo: Eric Guiry
Ancient ‘woolly dog’ ate mostly fish, new University of Victoria study finds

Study gives researchers better understanding of human-dog relationships on Tsehaht First Nation

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, Oct. 26, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps by 287, another senior home outbreak

Two more deaths recorded, community outbreak in Okanagan

MMFN First Nation has said that it will restrict access to portion of Highway 28 that passes through the Nation’s land until a road use agreement is reached. (Black Press file photo)
Vancouver Island First Nation blocks highway access to logging trucks in Gold River

Mowachaht/Muchalaht First Nation restricting access for Western Forest Products pending road deal

An untitled Emily Carr painting of Finlayson Point was donated to the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria by brothers Ian and Andrew Burchett. The painting had been in their family for several decades. (Courtesy of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria)
Never before seen painting by famed B.C. artist Emily Carr gifted to Victoria gallery

Painting among several donated to Art Gallery of Greater Victoria

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
Rescued bald eagle that came to life in B.C. man’s car had lead poisoning

Bird is on medication and recovering in rehab centre

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

The B.C. Centre for Disease control is telling people to keep an eye out for the poisonous death cap mushroom, which thrives in fall weather conditions. (Paul Kroeger/BCCDC)
Highly poisonous death cap mushroom discovered in Comox

This marks first discovery on Vancouver Island outside Greater Victoria area

Janet Austin, lieutenant governor of B.C., was presented with the first poppy of the Royal Canadian Legion’s 2020 Poppy Campaign on Wednesday. (Kendra Crighton/News Staff)
PHOTOS: B.C. Lieutenant Governor receives first poppy to kick off 2020 campaign

Janet Austin ‘honour and a privileged’ to receive the poppy

Cowichan Search and Rescue set up near the Silver Bridge in Duncan on Wednesday morning, Oct. 28, 2020 to rescue a dog from the Cowichan River. (Citizen file)
Cowichan Search and Rescue save dog from icy Cowichan River

Search and Rescue’s swiftwater team was called in

Most Read