Picayune receives $100,00 grant for new green space

PICAYUNE, MS (WLOX) - Picayune is $100,000 closer to creating a five acre green oasis in the center of town. The city wants to turn the land where the old Crosby Memorial hospital once stood into beautiful green space.

Picayune City Manager Jim Luke says the city wants to turn this into a pretty place people can come to exercise, relax and just enjoy the outdoors. To start this transformation, the city will be plant new grass and enclose the five acres site with fencing.

"Our second phase will be to place a walking track," said Jim Luke, city manager. "We will also have benches and areas for maybe a history wall that you can see the history of Picayune and you walk and stop on the benches. You can read the newspaper or a book. "

To help the city afford the park, the Lower Pearl River Valley Foundation presented Picayune with a $100,000 check.

Foundation President Clyde Dease said, "So many times cities, and non profits, and community organizations they simply don't have the funding and in these economic times with economic downturns it's difficult for everyone and we're just pleased to be able to provide some financial support to help make these goals a reality."

Officials believe the park will be a beautiful addition for Picayune residents to enjoy for many years to come. Later plans include adding an amphitheater.

"It will be beautiful. They plan to landscape it and light it," said Sidney L. Whitley, Foundation Vice President. "You can have outdoor presentations. Sometimes gospel singing, blues singing. Picayune on stage presentations. Just a host of things only limited by your imagination."

Picayune's city manager said the cost for phase one is $600,000 and the city hopes to start moving dirt around the end of the year.

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