Trail blazers: Citizens improve Goodyear Park

Published 4:40 am Saturday, February 17, 2018

There were people all over Goodyear Park in Bogalusa on Friday morning. Along with the regular walkers and joggers, the United Way had issued a call for volunteers to help install a “Born Learning Trail” and to beautify the space.

Larry Miller, chairman of the Washington Parish Leadership Council for the United Way, and Board of Trustees member for the United Way of Southeastern Louisiana, was measuring posts to cut and sand.

Kalisa Hyman, International Paper’s Bogalusa Mill Communications Manager, was painting a sidewalk with colorful ABC’s. IP was hosting the event for the United Way.

As president of the Bogalusa Rotary Club also, Miller was wearing two hats, and, later on, he was spotted instructing the volunteers who were sanding.

“The mission of United Way is to eradicate poverty in southeast Louisiana,” said Sonja Newman, who is with United Way of Southeast Louisiana. “We fight for the health education and financial stability of every individual.”

That apparently rang true with the roughly 30 volunteers who offered their time and talents Friday to get the project completed.

”I am an American Heritage Girls leader and a homeschool mom,” said volunteer Brittany Sherin. “Two of my children are here to earn community service hours.”

“I’m here to participate in the education and physical activity of our children,” said Community Outreach Nurse Sheila Seal. “I work for Our Lady of the Angels Hospital, and we’re all about serving our community.”

Angela Lambert, manager of communications for Our Lady of the Angels, said that the trail would be a great improvement for the park, which is bordered by the hospital campus.

“Our Lady of the Angels Hospital is excited to help bring the Born Learning Trail to life at Goodyear Park,” Lambert said. “We are committed to helping tear down barriers to good health for people across our community. We host many community events at the park, including ‘Walk With a Doc’ and our annual ‘Family Fest,’ and we know the trail will encourage families to get outside and be active together.”

Bogalusa Mayor Wendy Perrette also brought a public works crew from the city.

“Early childhood development is imperative, and this is just a great cause to help out on something for our youth,” she said.

“I’m here today to give back to my community that has been so good to me and my family, said perennial volunteer and Bogalusa City Council member Teddy Drummond. “I’ve been coming to this park since I was a little boy, and I’m glad to see the renewed interest.”