Protesting with a 12-ft.-plus-high billboard in John Prince Park has its challenges.
Opponents of an idea to build a spring training complex for the Atlanta Braves in the public park west of Lake Worth hired a company to pull the billboard with a truck.
The billboard – it urges residents to attend a County Commission meeting on Tuesday to voice their concerns about the baseball proposal – was supposed to make its rounds around the park from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. from Friday through Monday, starting Friday.
But the billboard arrived six hours late from Miami because the truck that was pulling it broke down Friday on Interstate 95.
Once it arrived at the park, around 5 p.m. Friday, the truck had to change one of the routes. Turns out the billboard was too high to fit under the Six Avenue South bridge that passes above Lake Osborne Drive – an 11-ft. clearance.
Then on Saturday, park rangers chased the truck off of the roads within the park, citing policy and safety issues.
The truck driver, Shamir Pinchinat, took it all in stride. He and his co-driver, Thierry Bruno, were polite and cordial with rangers. They improvised and drove on roads around the park.
“We’ve gotten a lot of thumbs-up from people and cars honking in support,’’ Pinchinat said, talking to a reporter while the truck idled at a stop sign on Snowden Drive, just east of the park.
The truck will make some rounds in downtown West Palm Beach on Tuesday morning, just before the County Commission meeting, which starts at 9:30 a.m.
The baseball proposal is not on the commission’s agenda. And County Administrator Verdenia Baker said she does not plan to bring it up during her comments.
But several Lake Osborne residents plan to voice their concerns at 2 p.m., during the Matters by the Public section of the meeting. They live close to the park and they fear it will be destroyed if the Braves build a complex there.
The county had planned to start $2 million in improvements at the park, including a new dog park and gazebos. A ground-breaking ceremony was scheduled for Wednesday.
But the ceremony was canceled and the improvements postponed until the commission decides on whether to pursue luring the Braves to the park.
A majority of commissioners have told The Post that they support exploring the idea. But when commissioner Shelley Vana brought it up last week at a workshop, the commissioners said they wanted to wait until the Braves submit a formal proposal.
Baker said in a text message Saturday that she has not received a proposal yet.