Last week’s ice storm had a devastating impact throughout the city of Memphis, and the cleanup will take a long time. This week our team has been assessing the damage to Overton Park, and we wanted to give you an update on what to expect when you visit the park and how you can help with the cleanup effort.
When You Visit the Park
- There are branches on the ground throughout the park, as well as some hanging limbs. Please avoid any areas where we have hung caution tape, which include a portion of Rainbow Lake Playground and the small-dog side of the dog park.
- The Rainbow Lake Playground restrooms are currently experiencing a power outage; East Parkway Playground restrooms are operating normally.
The Cleanup Process
- The City of Memphis will handle removal of debris from the storm, but it has over 150 parks as well as neighborhoods to service in addition to Overton Park. We advise patience as crews get through their task list, but we can also take steps to make this process easier for them.
- To help City crews out and speed up their efforts, we’ll need to move and stack limbs along the park’s interior roads over the next few days.
How You Can Help
- We estimate that the total cleanup cost from this week’s storm will be around $15,000. This includes our landscaping crew hauling and stacking downed limbs throughout the park, as well as a tree crew to remove larger limbs. If you’d like to contribute financially toward this effort, please visit overtonpark.org/give. Any amount helps!
- We can reduce that $15,000 number with your help! We’re hosting a volunteer event this Friday from noon to 5:00PM at East Parkway Pavilion, where we’ll direct you to problem areas and show you what to do. Bring water and gloves if you have them, along with rakes, brooms, or anything that will make it easier for you to move limbs. No power tools, please. Show up anytime during the afternoon to participate; no RSVP required. Share our Facebook event and invite friends!
- You are also welcome to assist in the cleanup whenever it’s convenient for you. Guidelines to follow:
- Please drag and stack limbs in a pile in an open area on the side of an interior park road. (Avoid the sides of busy streets like Poplar and East Parkway.) Avoid making your piles beside any features like fire hydrants, bridges, or anything that could be damaged when the trucks come in to pick up the debris.
- If you are cleaning up inside the Old Forest, move manageable limbs off the trails and set them as gently as possible inside the forest to decay naturally. We’ll handle larger limbs and trees with professional crews.
Thank you so much for helping us get Overton Park back into shape. If you have any questions, please email us here or call 901-214-5450.