SOUTH WALES, N.Y. (WIVB) — The Erie County Sheriff’s Office is searching for the person responsible for vandalizing the inside of the ski lodge at Emery Park.

The Erie County Parks Department reported the incident happening early last week.

Mark Cornell is the deputy commissioner of parks for Erie County. He said the ski lodge and field house were broken into and six fire extinguishers were set off in the lodge.

“While some kids probably thought they were having some harmless fun in reality they were doing a significant amount of damage and committing a felony, frankly,” said Cornell.

Doors need to be replaced and a thorough environmental cleaning needs to be done. The cleaning alone costs $31,000.

“There is literally no square inch between the main meeting hall, the restrooms, the kitchen area, that doesn’t have to be cleaned and it’s not just soap and water, it’s cleaning up irritating chemicals.”

The parks department is working with the sheriff’s office to catch the person responsible. Cornell said the most disappointing part to him is having to cancel people’s events.

“It’s just very disappointing to not be able to provide these wonderful public resources for people that just want to see their family again.”

They hope to get the mess cleaned up in a couple of weeks but don’t have a set date on when events can start happening again.

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the Sheriff’s Dispatch Center at 716-858-2903 and refer to CL #21-046214.

Kayla Green is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2021. See more of her work here.