Nassau County officials recently evicted the fairy and gnome homes from Mill Pond Park about three months after the village of miniature figurines magically moved into the woods on the Bellmore-Wantagh border.
Andy Kuzma, the Levittown man who built and placed most of the tiny toy houses in the park, was disappointed in the development, as were families that enjoyed seeing them while strolling along the path that circles the pond. But county officials said the gnomes and their homes were against the rules.
“There is a county ordinance that forbids putting structures up in our county parks,” said Michael Martino, spokesman for Nassau County Executive Laura Curran. “However, we did reach out to discuss with this gentleman.”
Kuzma confirmed that the county called him, informed him of a complaint against the gnomes and asked if he could relocate the village to Eisenhower Park in East Meadow — a request Kuzma denied.
“I don’t think I will pressure the county,” Kuzma said. “But I do hope that they will at least allow me again since so many of the community are very disappointed in [the gnomes’] removal.”
The displays, which were carefully placed at the base of several trees in the park, were made to look as though the mythological creatures have taken up residence beside the pond. They also included figurines of dinosaurs, owls and frogs.
Others who had followed Kuzma’s lead and placed homemade tiny houses for figurines in the park also have removed their structures. Despite the development, Kuzma said he will continue his volunteer efforts to clean up the park, something he has done for years.
Blythe Worster, a 40-year-old mother of two from Bellmore who regularly took her daughters to see the gnomes and fairies, was saddened at the news.
“The whole thing is just so disappointing,” she said. “The gnome displays were really bringing so many people together. It was creative and artistic.
“It taught the kids so much about community and pride and even recycling and reusing materials,” she continued. “Although I understand that it is a preserve, nothing was being permanently altered. No trees were being cut down and nothing was being nailed into the trees. It was something both kids and adults loved and worked on. It gave the community something to be excited about during a time when it seems like there’s just so much evil and negative in the world.”