When it snows, there aren’t a lot of great places to park in and around Boston.

And after getting hit with a blizzard over the weekend, leaving mounds of snow on the streets of the city, parking spots become a rarity.

It has long-been a tradition for residents to stake their claim in the snow by placing objects—like cones, milk crates, and even lawn and beach chairs— in a shoveled out spot to ensure no one else scoops up their parking space.

In 2008, employees from Boston’s Department of Public Works cracked down on the practice, collecting 220 space-savers placed in cleared out parking spots, after receiving a series of complaints citywide.

But according to officials from Mayor Tom Menino’s office, there is no rule on the books about putting milk crates and broken furniture down and claiming a shoveled spot as personal turf.

“While not written into the law, the Mayor is mindful of the work that goes into shoveling out a parking space,” according to a statement from Menino’s office. “We request that space savers be removed within 48 hours of a snow emergency being lifted.”

Workers typically pick up space savers during a neighborhood’s trash day.

With the parking ban still in effect in Boston until further notice, here are some space-saving items to help make sure no one steals your parking spot once you have cleared it out.

Deck Chairs

It’s not summer, so surely you aren’t using that plastic seat for sitting outside.

Photo via vosizneias.com


Milk Crates

Dump out your record collection and put the crates in place of your vehicle.

Image courtesy of shutterstock.com


Recycling Bins

It’s risky using the city recycling bins in order to claim your turf, mostly because you don’t want your tree-hugging neighbors to think you hate the environment, but holding your parking spot is life or death in the winter. It’s worth the risk of being judged.

Beach Chairs

The beach weather is months away. Bust out that circa-1908 beach lounger and put it down in the shoveled spot. An added bonus? when you’re done shoveling you can take a quick rest on it.

Image courtesy of shutterstock.com



They are pretty easy to move, and unless you steal them from someone, they are usually hard to find. So expect to have yours stolen, too.

Your Kid’s Toys

They will understand when they are older that somethings, like fun, need to be sacrificed at the expense of holding down the fort after exerting so much effort to shovel out a car.