City holds ribbon cutting for first tornado sirens

Updated: Apr. 2, 2018 at 3:57 PM CDT
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(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)

CHEROKEE VILLAGE, AR (KAIT) - After a year and a half of fundraising, the City of Cherokee Village is now safer, just in time for the spring severe weather season.

A ribbon cutting was held Monday morning for the town's two new tornado sirens.

City officials and residents gathered under the siren located near the marina on Lake Thunderbird to commemorate the first time the town has ever had storm sirens.

Mayor Russ Stokes said this has been something he has wanted to do since campaigning for office.

"I'm glad to see it bear fruit," Stokes said.

The fundraising really took off when David Woods become emergency management director for the town.

There were 76 separate contributions to pay for the sirens and only three of them were grants.

The rest of the money came from private citizens or local businesses.

"The businesses like First National Bank and Company, First Community Bank, the Senior Center with their big dinner fundraiser which contributed well over $5,000 near the end and helped put us over the top," Stokes said. "The city put a little bit of money in at the end to help with the erection of the sirens and installation but there are just a lot of people in that number that came forward and reached into their pocket. It didn't make a difference how big or how small the amount was, it all helps."

The city is hoping to add at least one more tornado siren to get full coverage of the village.

"[We don't know yet] whether we will have another fundraiser or whether the city will try to find a way to come up with revenue to purchase another siren and put it up," Stokes said.

The cost of two sirens was just over $28,000.

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