Millennium Park community rebuild set to begin

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - It's been 10 months since arson destroyed Millennium Park. Since then the community has wasted no time. Immediately launching a campaign to rebuild the park bigger and better than before. Monday the community gets to work on day one of the rebuild.

Just like they did 11 years ago a flood of volunteers are set start putting hammer to nail and make the park a reality. But a lot of work has already been underway. In the last week construction crews and city workers have laid the foundation and structure for the new park.

"I think it's fair to say it's going to be certainly bigger, and I know it's going to be better. But it's going to be definitely bigger," said Lake Charles Mayor Randy Roach.

Thanks in large part to generous donations by area businesses. Big checks continue to come in all helping raise $350,000 to put towards the $650,000 project.

At Tuesday's City Council agenda meeting the following donations were made:

Greater Lake Charles Rotary Club: $10,000
ConocoPhillips: $15,000
Sasol North America: $10,000
CertainTeed Corporation: $5,000

The first of 3,000 volunteers will begin rolling in at 8 a.m. Monday. With a lot to accomplish on day one organizers say they'll need all the help they can get.

"We have quiet a number signed up, but then I just think people are going to get up in the morning - it's going to be a beautiful day and just going to come on out and volunteer. We are excited about it so much," said Kay Barnett, Project Coordinator.

Barnett said there is plenty to get done, including a huge pirate ship overlooking the lake - one of many attractions that pay tribute to Southwest Louisiana history.

"So it will be a lot of detailed work and each day we have to make progress to get to where we need to be by that 10th day we are out there so we can finish," said Barnett.

Keeping a tight schedule the labor of love will be something the Lake Area can enjoy and be proud of for years to come.

"We have an incredible community spirit here and everybody has just embraced this project just like the first one and it I know it says a lot about the quality of life in Southwest Louisiana and the quality place we live in. It's about what we as people in this community want, need and demand," said Barnett.

The rebuild is being done in two phases. Phase one starts Wednesday, October 26th - Saturday, October 30th. Phase 2 begins on Wednesday, November 2nd - Saturday, November 6th.

Work starts at 8 a.m. Volunteers are asked to be there between 7:30 and 8 a.m. Everyone is welcome - they'll definitely find something for you to do and put you to work.

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