Region 8 State Parks Suffer Winter Damage and Closure

JONESBORO (KAIT) Many of the state parks in Region 8 have suffered a huge amount of damage and several are closed.

Two of the worst hit are just up Highway 141 North of Jonesboro. Lake Frierson and Crowley's Ridge State Park are both closed indefinitely.

Vicki Trimble the Assistant Superintendent for Lake Frierson State Park says that nearly every tree in the park has damage.

"In order to get the public coming in again to make it safe for the people we've probably got an estimation of nearly 15 to 20 thousand cubic yards of downed debris."

At Crowleys Ridge Rick Lane says they estimate 80 percent of the trees in the 300 acre park have damage.

Frierson suffered no building damage, Crowley's Ridge lost some skylights in a shower house and a transformer spilled. Entergy will have to remove part of the parking lot and repave it after the contaminants have been removed.

In both parks the biggest danger to visitors are "Widow makers" those hanging branches that are barely attached to the parent tree, with wind or stormy weather they could fall at anytime.

Neither park has a definite time when they will re-open. It could be as late as April depending on how the clean up efforts go.