Vets park moves forward in Tennessee Ridge


Money approved for gravel parking lot as playground equipment is installed at Veterans Memorial Park at City Hall


TENNESSEE RIDGE, Tenn. — The Veterans Memorial Park at Tennessee Ridge City Hall is beginning to take shape with playground equipment being installed and the Board of Commissioners approving money for a parking lot.

At their Aug. 1 meeting, commissioners approved $15,700 to construct a gravel parking lot adjacent to the playground area.

City Manager Kenneth Dunavant said the parking lot will be 150 feet by 150 feet and will contain larger gravel as a base and crusher stone on top, which will compact for a solid parking area.

The lot also will serve as additional parking for events at city hall, he said, adding that the hope is to later tar and chip the parking lot.

Last August, commissioners approved constructing the Veterans Memorial Park on the property surrounding the city’s new City Hall building.

The park will feature about a half-mile of walking trails and various species of native trees have been donated and planted around where the trails will be.

Meanwhile, Traditions First Bank contributed $40,000 to buy playground equipment for the park, and the Houston County Lions Club is paying $12,000 to construct a fence around it, similar to the one at Rotary Park in Erin.

Initially, a memorial to local veterans was planned to be attached to the City Hall building near the flag pole, but Dunavant said the plans changed to move plaques inside the building.

In February, the plan again changed to place the plaques outside within the park.

The military-style dog tag will contain the veteran’s name, branch of service and dates of service, and will be attached to aluminum plaques, which will hold up to 100 dog tags.

City Finance Director Nancy Cobb said that so far, nearly 600 names of veterans will be included in the memorial.

The dog tags are on sale for $20, which pays for two — one for the memorial and one for the purchaser to keep.

The cost of the dog tags is helping pay for the park.

Outgoing commissioners

It was the final meeting for Commissioner Darrell Allison, who is moving out of Tennessee Ridge, and Ann Dew, who was absent because of her health, and likewise is not running for re-election.

“We appreciate the time she has devoted to the city and the time she has served on the board and as vice mayor,” Mayor Stony Odom said of Dew.

He also thanked Allison for his service.

“I appreciate serving with everyone on this board,” Allison said. “It’s been a pleasure to serve the city I will always think of as my home. It is my home.”

Mark Hicks can be reached at 931-212-7626 or on Twitter: @markhicksleaf.

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