Local Island Filled With More Than Trees

The 43-acre Cedar Lake Island is not only filled with wildlife and beautiful foliage, it's also filled with years of history, which includes childhood memories.

"I grew up here as a kid and playing pirates and just camping out and fishing and having a good time on the island and never wanted it to get developed. We always wanted it to stay like it is, the nature of it," said Jeffrey Powell.

Then word came the island would be auctioned off.

"We really thought that was gonna be the end of the island but now we found out that it's gonna be turned over to a nature sanctuary. It's a dream come true," said Powell.

A large crowd gathered on the island to celebrate not a dream, but a reality.

Through funding from the Mississippi Coastal Impact Assistance Program, the Land Trust for the Mississippi Coastal Plain organization bought the island to simply preserve its natural beauty and history.

This island was once known as the city of Vennie, home to one of the largest timber communities and sawmills along the coast.

Now, it will serve as sort of a monument.

"So much on the Gulf Coast is being developed that we're trying to save the few wonderful spots that are left and there's not many spots left anymore," said Land Trust for the Mississippi Coastal Plain president Buck Lawrence.

"This to me is green space. An oak tree with mowed grass and squirrels. That's not green space to me. This is the part I call green space. You got to have room for the snakes, the coons, and the moccasins, all that stuff," said Billy Broadus.

And according to many of these people, you also have to make room to leave a legacy for the future.

Everyone is encouraged to come out and enjoy the Cedar Lake Island for free.