Community Park closer to a reality

The non-profit group, Friends of Nanih Waiya Community Park, recently sold chicken plates and raffled off some Adirondack furniture to help raise more funds for their community park project.

Although there were several other sports events and activities that day, the community really came out in support of the park.

park donation sign

Friends members Joey and Lester Holdiness, David Sullivan and Friends President Jerry Hemphill got there early that morning preparing the grill and getting the chicken started cooking “low and slow”. By 10:30 other members arrived with side dishes and a few minutes later the first customers pulled in. Traffic was steady from that point on.

In all, the group sold 134 chicken plates along with several chances on the Adirondack furniture set and collected many donations. The final tally for the day was over $3,000 collected for the park.

“We didn’t pre-sell any plates for the event so we weren’t sure how many we would sell especially with all the games and practices going on that day” said Hemphill. “But the community came out to help either by serving, buying plates or donating. That is what makes this community special.”

Hemphill paying off the note.

Hemphill paying off the note.

On March 28, 2014, a generous anonymous donation was received and Jerry Hemphill presented a check to Ellis Houston for the amount needed to pay off the note on the property which is located on Hwy 490 East approximately ¾ mile from Vans Landing. “We now own the property for OUR Park. It is time to start building,” Hemphill said after receiving the note back from Mr. Houston. At this time the Friends group is waiting on the weather to permit some dozer work to begin on the property and is still waiting on the IRS to approve the 501(c) 3 status for the group.

“This status (nonprofit/tax exempt) is what we need to apply for grants and it is also holding up several significant donations” said Hemphill.

“We have sent them everything they should need and we have contacted our US Representative and Senator for help. All we can do now is wait.”

For more information about the park you can visit and “like” their Facebook page at

Donations are welcome and can be sent to:
Friends of Nanih Waiya Community Park
PO Box 83
Louisville, MS 39339