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Veterans Park in UC dedicated

Veterans Park in UC dedicated
Veterans Park in UC dedicated | Veterans Park in UC dedicated
Associate Editor
The flags for the United States of America and the State of Tennessee were flying high and a steady breeze was moving through the pavilion as Union City officials opened the new Veterans Park at the Northwest Tennessee Re-gional Industrial Park.
Mayor Terry Hailey said when the city purchased the 600 acre industrial park, there were hopes the city might be able to use the small lake in its future plans.
“This pond has been here for most of my life, but I don’t think it has ever had a better day than today,” the mayor said.
“This park is already a place where many people from Union City and the surrounding area come to walk and to fish and to enjoy family time,” he said, adding with a chuckle that Tuesday’s opening was mainly just to open the bathrooms since the park is already being utilized. “It makes me happy and the other members of our council, city administration and parks department happy to see the park already getting so much use. Maybe we do something right every now and again.”
Council members on hand for the opening were Billy Jack “B.J.” Cranford, Bill “Rat” Harrison, Judy Robinson, Danny Leggett and Johnny Bacon. Dianne Eskew is also a councilman.
The 27.9-acre park includes a 3,200-square foot pavilion and a three-quarter mile walking track around the pond, which is stocked with fish and includes a pier and boardwalk.
The park was built with a 90/10 matching grant from the Tennessee Department of Transportation at a cost of $1,193,000. TDOT’s contribution was $1,073,630. Administrators of the grant were Neil Hansen and Lisa Dunn.
The Department of Agriculture Department of Forestry provided a grant to pay for 129 trees, which were planted at the park. Melynda Tidwell with the Union City Public Works Department wrote the grant and worked with Bruce Webster of the forestry department. The total cost of the trees and their installation, which were 100 percent covered by the grant, was $22,243.
Project contractors recognized included Randy McKinnon and Jennie Keel with TLM Architects and Engineers, electrical engineer Justin Phillips with Phillips Engineering, landscaping architect Randy Smith and Allen Searcy, Brian Searcy and David Searcy with Allen Searcy Builder Contractors. Others recognized by Hailey included city manager Kathy Dillon, Ken Morris and his staff with the Union City Department of Parks and Recreation, Lanny Callicott representing the Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency, Lindsay Frilling with Obion County Joint Economic  Development Corporation, Obion County Chamber of Commerce president Chuck Doss, Chris Virgin, Obion County Mayor Benny McGuire, Dale Hendon of U.S. Rep. Stephen Fincher’s office, Tennessee Economic and Community Development regional director Blake Swaggert and state Rep. Bill Sanderson, who spoke at the event.
Hailey thanked the veterans “who everyday continue to preserve our freedoms.” Not only is the park named for veterans, but the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 4862 donated a small portion of land adjacent to the pond so the city could complete the walking track around the pond and avoid spending extra money to build a bridge across it.
Also thanked during the program was Baptist Memorial Hospital-Union City, which provided fruit trays for refreshments.
Published in The Messenger 5.9.12