Back to square one

Published 12:10 pm Tuesday, July 19, 2005

By By Tim Cottrell
After only recently awarding a bid to repair the damages wrought on Tom Byrne Park and Houston Avery Park, the City of Atmore Parks &Recreation Department will have to go back to the drawing board.
Hurricane Dennis swept through Atmore last week, and in its wake left both parks in near ruins.
Melvin Middleton, Parks &Recreation Director, laid out the staggering amount of damage done to both parks.
"Well the swimming pools we had a little temporary roof on the pump house," Middleton said. "It threw it in the pool. We covered that with a tarp. Mainly with the pool it's just debris and leaves and things like that. At Houston Avery Park we had a ping pong table that went through a roof. It's the same with the pool over there – debris, leaves and stuff. Right now we're cleaning that up, but with the rain we've been getting the last two days it's slowed that up again.
"Trees are down all over the park (Tom Byrne)," Middleton continued. "Some of the poles that were taken down from Ivan were taken down again. At the Cal Ripken park we had a tree that landed on the dugout and broke it in the middle, and also snapped one of the light poles down. On the Babe Ruth field the scoreboard was demolished. The batting cage/backstop was blown from home plate to about 330 feet in the right field corner. A couple of windows are out in the press box on the Babe Ruth field. We've got more shingles off all the dugouts and all the buildings in both parks. We lost more in that area. The main thing, other than losing some more trees, is it added more damage to other stuff that was damaged from Ivan that we haven't gotten fixed up yet."
Middleton said he was unsure of how this would effect repairs that were about to take place at the park, but right now he was concerned with cleaning up what could be done.
"What we're having to do right now is we're taking a list from Ivan and checking it against other damage, then we'll go from there," he said. "We're just going through item by item. The insurance companies and all will go through and see what more damage is going to be added to this. We don't know at what point right now."

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