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Volunteers with Keep America Beautiful Again on Coast
West Gulfport Park Focus of Attention

By Keith Burton - GCN   3/20/07

Hundreds of volunteers, servicemen and women and local citizens packed into what was once Gulfport's Westside Park to begin the process of remaking the Katrina's destroyed park a place for residents and visitor to enjoy.

Already by Tuesday afternoon, the volunteers with Keep America Beautiful had planted new shrubs, cleaned up the area and were laying new sod. On had also were dozens new park benches that were to be set up on the site.

The park and the the Westside Community center were completely leveled by the Hurricane. Even today, the are surrounding area is filled with the debris reminders left by the storm. The neighborhood surrounding the park was among the worse hit areas of the city. The hurricane had tossed dozens of shipping containers filled with chicken and shrimp that were to be shipped oversees. Within weeks, the cargo was stinking and rotting throughout the area,  problem that persisted even after a year.

The new park will have a playground that will be bigger than the previous playground. There will also be a green oasis that will become a sitting area and a couple of pavilions.

We're going to have a playground module that's going to be a little bit bigger, little bit better than the one that was here before. We're looking at a couple of pavilions."

Also, where the Charles Walker Senior Citizen Center once stood, is now being transformed into a green oasis that will serve as a new sitting area.


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