CUTTING A NEW PATH

West Plains city work crews recently finished up work in adding a new looping trail and laying the groundwork for paving over 1.5 miles of trails in Galloway Creek Nature Park. Part of the new trail runs parallel to County Road 1770 before looping back into the park and following along Galloway Creek. In addition to new paths, there will be new playscapes for children and other features added by next spring.

Crews will soon begin to work on paving trails and constructing a new play area for children in the Galloway Creek Nature Park on County Road 1770 in north West Plains.

According to city Community Services Director Todd Shanks, crews will be paving over 1.5 miles of trails and have already finished most of the work in laying down gravel in preparation.

Shanks said the work on the play area will be done in phases, with the first phase scheduled for completion by March 2021. The paving of the trails by Pace Construction is expected to continue through early fall of this year.

“The new improvements will include a lot of sensory and artistic components,” Shanks said. For example, he said, improvements include a log and sound walk with wind chimes, sand bar willow tree tunnel, an integrated slide built into a mound, an art wall and chalkboards, bird houses and a new vinyl perimeter fence.

According to the Galloway Park Board, the civic group overseeing the project, due to the park improvements, the annual Haunting in the Hollows event, normally held on the third Saturday in October, has been canceled.

The board has expressed interest in continuing with the event in the future, and is currently looking for an organization to organize and run the day-long event in October 2021.

Funding for paving the trails in the park was awarded to the City of West Plains by a Recreational Trails Program grant through the Land Water Conservation Fund.

In addition, the Galloway Park Board was also awarded funding through the city’s Tourism Department Community Grant Program for the construction of natural playscapes in the park.

Interested parties are encouraged to email Galloway Park Board President Brenda Smith at brendasmith@Missouristate.edu.

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