On Tuesday, Terrebonne Parish officials and community members commemorated recent progress at the Bayou Country Sports Park (BCSP), which sits off of La. Highway 311 near the Lakes subdivision in Houma.
The festivities kicked off with the raising of the country, state and parish flags by the Marine Corps League.
“How can we not have a sports park without honoring the American flag and also the Louisiana flag and the Terrebonne Parish flag,” said Parish President Gordon Dove. “That’s what all this is about — honoring the flag that is going to fly over this sports park on this great day.”
Terrebonne Parish Sheriff Tim Soignet, a Marine veteran, noted the importance of the flag being seen by folks as they enter the park.
“Our forefathers and everybody who served long before I did have laid the foundation so we can enjoy little freedoms. And every day when they [residents] roll into the park and they want to enjoy, there’s a reminder of the price that was paid for us to enjoy the freedoms.”
After the flags were raised, attendees traveled down Bayou Country Parkway to join the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the park’s splash pad on the other end of the complex.
Designed by architect Joey Furr, the 9,000-square-foot splash park features men’s and women’s restrooms and is accompanied by a family beach area. Houma’s Quality Industries donated the oilfield equipment incorporated into its design.
The construction cost for the area was $1.4 million, funded with $1.15 million of Recreation District 2-3 tax revenue and a $250,000 grant from the Land and Water Conservation Fund.
The splash pad was the last project for BCSP on the books for Rec 2-3 — as the parish took over the park’s maintenance, operations and construction last October.
According to Councilman Darrin Guidry, the project started three years ago when the old Rec 2-3 board applied for the grant for the splash pad.
“The new reorganized board took the project over, ran with it, built this project, and towards the very end of it, the parish came in and added the last-minute touches with the beach and everything. And then here we are,” he said.
Guidry said the area’s completion was a group effort not only by the parish government and the Rec 2-3 board but also the voters — who passed the property tax that allows for such amenities to be constructed.
“You vote in your recreation millage, and this is part of what your millage is used for,” he said. “So when you have fun here, thank yourself as well.”
After the ceremony, officials turned on the splash pad’s water for local children to enjoy the free new play area.
“This is what we’ve been working for: to watch the kids run all over the place and have a blast,” said Shawn Dupre, Rec 2-3 board member.
For Robbie Liner, board chairman, the moment felt like receiving a grade for a test. “You get your grade back, and you passed,” he said. “That’s how I feel. It’s an accomplishment.”
“It’s been a long time coming. It’s been a lot of work,” said Ryan Page, another Rec 2-3 board member. “But I’m glad to see kids having fun.”
See pictures from the events below: