It was, as Renee Witke says, "kind of mysterious."
When Witke came into work after Labor Day weekend at St. Bernard Catholic preschool on Atwood Avenue, she discovered that someone had stolen the rubber mulch in the school's playground. Although the shredded rubber has elicited protests in some parts of the city, Witke says the school has been pleased with it.
Witke notes that the thieves would have had to spend hours stealing the material. "You'd have to rake it and shovel it into a wheelbarrow," she says. "It was just unfortunate. We're a very small nonprofit preschool. It's tough for our budget to take on this loss."
While Witke has no idea who would steal the rubber mulch, she notes that it's become increasingly popular in yards, parks and gardens.
Madison Police and the Madison Parks Division say there have been no other similar thefts reported.