Craighead Forest Park Grand Reopen

September 21, 2006--Posted at 10:45 pm

JONESBORO-- The City Parks and Recreation celebrates progress at Craighead Forest Park with a grand reopening.

Today was a culmination of years of work to improve the park.

The grand re-open started with a private tour for the city council... Showcasing 25 projects accomplished within the last five years... Totaling 1.3 million dollars.

A third of that was funded by the city, two thirds has been funded by grants, donations & appropriations.

"We restructured all the bottom of the lake for fish habitat. We improved the shoreline or stabilized the shoreline to create a more beautiful shoreline along the lake. We put in a kids fishing area. Combined that with Rotary Centennial Park, new bathroom there. That's over $725 thousand worth of improvements," Jason Wilkie of Parks and Recreation says.

The city has also done some planting though out the park, adding trees and natural beauty, along with the addition of fishing piers and a new boat launch & docks for recreation.

But the focus is not just on landscape, the park is a host to several community events.

"A lot of our focus has been on outdoor athletics, but I think we could have outdoor concerts in the Spring and the Fall. The nature center has brought some outdoor education here. This is a venue where you can have festivals and antique shows and car shows... Things like that," Wilkie says.

This is just the beginning of park improvements.

Wilkie says he expects more additions in the future, but with the response to the current changes and five hard years of work, Craighead Forest Park is providing a whole new venue for recreation.

"We're seeing an increased number of folks jogging, walking, riding bikes. People who love the outdoors are coming here. A lot of people are rediscovering it. I hear more and more comments that people love what's happening at craighead forest park," Wilkie says.