Jan. 13 was a warm, sunny day, perfect for a walk in Centennial Park with my dog Ginger. I have lived in the Centennial neighborhood for almost 45 years and ran on trails through these woods long before there was a lake and a park. I have run races through the park and watched my daughter and daughters-in-law compete in every Iron Girl there.

It is one of my very favorite running courses from my house and Ginger loves to walk there. Centennial Park is quiet, peaceful and beautiful. Time spent there calms my spirit and soothes my soul.

Try to imagine then how I felt when told by a park employee that the park would close at 3 p.m. so deer could be shot. I have always looked for deer when in the park because it is such a joy to see them. As Ginger and I left the park I was hoping not to see any deer as I was already so sad.

I understand the problems of deer overpopulation, but fail to grasp why there can't be a better, humane solution. Some members of my family are hunters, but that doesn't mean I oppose it any less.

Howard County is education and progressive. Can't time and money be devoted to a different solution? Let's lead the way. Albert Einstein said, "Our task must be to free ourselves by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty."

Please don't kill any more deer in our parks.

Arleen Dinneen

Ellicott City