Selmont unveils new Park PlacePublished 7:23pm Monday, September 2, 2013
The ribbon cutting for a new walking trail behind Tipton-Durant Middle School took place Saturday morning at the Showstopper Softball Tournament and Festival.
The festival was put on by the Selmont Community Development Corporation and sponsored by the Showstoppers softball organization. Organizers hope the new Tipton-Durant Walking Trail will promote healthy lifestyles for members of the Dallas County community and encourage people to get daily exercise.
“The community has responded really well. We see people out there walking,” SCDC president Vivian Jones said. “We also put up lights because during the winter it gets dark at 5 p.m. We will have the lights on until about 8 p.m. or 9 p.m. so that they can still walk.”
Jones describes the new area as a smaller Bloch Park. The area, referred to as Selmont Park Place, is described as a place with an athletic field, family entertainment center and baseball complex.
“It is truly fantastic to have a walking trail,” Selma Mayor George Evans said. “Nowadays, because of all the obesity and health reasons, we need walking trails and people need a place just to go to walk casually.“
Evans was a football, baseball and basketball coach at Tipton-Durant School years ago, so he said he appreciates the vision of those who helped make the walking trail happen.
“It is as pretty now as it was when I was coaching here. It looks marvelous,” Evans said. “I’m excited about what the community is doing to change the environment here and getting involved in things that can relate and bring the community closer together.”
The SCDC is still hoping to add bathrooms to the walking trail, but the best price they have been quoted is $22,000. The festival, which took place from Saturday through Labor Day, was a fundraising event to continue raising money to better the Selmont community.
The festival also included a 9-team softball tournament, played on a field adjacent to the walking trail. The field is still being worked on, but the vision for it is already very alive.
“Hopefully one day it will also become part of the school, which will be a part of their physical education — to come out here and play softball and to get the kids back active,” Jones said.
State Sen. Hank Sanders, State Rep. Dario Melton and Stacy Adams, who spoke as a representative for the Alabama Department of Public Health, spoke at the ribbon cutting.
Sanders called the support for the new walking trail “personal and so important,” because many members of his family have some type of diabetes. He walks regularly, which he credits for his good health.
“I hope that the community will use it broadly, because I can personally testify that the benefits are great,” Sanders said.