Officials taking steps to protect Stanhope's landmarks By Carol Dunbar STANHOPE n A playground designed as a place of recreation and relaxation for the children and people of Stanhope is now a cause for concern and distress. During the Aug. 30 meeting of the borough, Mayor Diana Kuncken said that Musconetcong Park had fallen prey to vandals and requested that Police Chief Steve Pittigher expand patrols of the area. The first incident occurred during construction even before the park was dedicated, and involved graffiti and damage to the playground equipment. Dedication of the park took place on Stanhope Family Fun Day held July 10. Since then, officials report, there have been three more incidents of vandalism. Officials are concerned that a newly unveiled marker commemorating the municipality's 100th anniversary and the soon-to-be-installed World Trade Center memorial may be defaced. After the meeting, the chief of police said patrols of the area have increased and that information gathered by speaking with area residents has given police "a really good idea" who is responsible for the damage to the park. The park straddles Musconetcong Avenue and includes a lake and playground areas. The park closes at 10 p.m. The borough's Department of Public Works is now preparing the site of the World Trade Center memorial, which will be dedicated on Sept. 10.