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Create the change you want to see is a phrase often used around the Hands On Thomas County (HOTC) office. This summer, a group of volunteers took it to heart!
Led by Hands On Thomas County Board Member, Jason Harpe of CCH Construction, more than 50 individuals and businesses came together to make improvements to Northside Park, a small neighborhood park hidden down a dirt lane off of Chatham Road, but boasting a baseball field, tennis court, basketball court, playground, off-road bike trail, and bathrooms. Under-utilized and in need of some repair as a result, Harpe and other community members recognized the park was a gem in the rough for local families and sports teams.
Although the city-owned park, like several others, is in line for upgrades, volunteers knew that they could make basic improvements to the facilities – allowing the park to be more usable and safer now – while the City of Thomasville continues to undergo a formal assessment of each of its city parks. Says Mike Owens, City Parks & Recreation Manager, “HOTC approached me with a plan to do some basic repairs and upgrades to the existing facilities at Northside Park. With most major park renovations on hold until our formal assessment is complete, we saw this as a great way to make this park more enjoyable for our citizens right now.”
Hands On Thomas County often collaborates with concerned citizens and community partners to connect volunteers with local needs, and supply structure, coordination, and resources for volunteer projects. Working under the umbrella of HOTC and with oversight by the City, volunteers graded the dirt road, put a new roof on the bathrooms, painted and refit the dugouts with cubbies and benches, redid the baseball and general field, added new practice equipment and a storage building, and much more.
In the fall, Hands On Thomas County hopes to refocus volunteer efforts on the tennis court, basketball court, playground, and off-road bike trail. “We envision making Northside Park more welcoming and active for families and kids by repainting the basketball court, adding blacktop games like 4-square and hopscotch to the tennis court, painting a mural on one of the dugouts, and clearing and marking the bike trail. All of the park projects will be temporary to allow for community input and recommendation come assessment time but will provide new fun for park users,” according to Angela Kiminas, HOTC Executive Director.
Special thanks to the City of Thomasville, and the following individuals and businesses for volunteering their time and resources to this project which benefits the entire community: Al’s Quality Painting, Bannister Electric, CCH Construction, John Godwin, The Harpe Family, Kevin Hester, Johnson Landscaping, Kustom Exteriors, Olivia Sawyer, Scoggins Dozer, The Seay Family, Thomas County Stars, and Tsunami Wash.
To visit Northside Park, go to 330 Woodland Drive, Thomasville, GA
New roof on bathroSoms
Kustom Interiors installing new roof
Scoggins Dozer grading the road
Bannister Electric upgrading electric
Al’s Quality Painting refreshing the dugout
Thomas County Stars
TC Stars move new benches into dugouts
TC Stars cleaning the bathroom
Moving benches to football field
Helping with irrigation repairs
Obstacles for football practice
Thomas County Stars helped with cleaning, upgrades, benches, and irrigation repairs
Tsunami Wash cleaning exterior of buildings
New security light pole
Freshly painted and refurbished dugouts