Family-friendly changes coming to Southside Park - KYTX CBS 19 Tyler Longview News Weather Sports

Family-friendly changes coming to Southside Park

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TYLER (KYTX) - Big changes are coming to Southside Park and Rose Rudman Trails in Tyler.

Construction is underway to bring a more family-friendly environment to the area. Across from the playground and pavilion, there's about to be a new 1,200 square foot reading space for families.

"It's an area that needed some beautification." says Stephanie Rollings.

She is director of Tyler's Parks and Recreation department.

"There's not a lot of grass that grows in that area, so this project will help beautify that area."

She says she was ecstatic when those with the Literacy Council of Tyler approached her with this idea for the park.

"I think that raising awareness for literacy is a huge thing for our community. And, this offers a very public site for people to come to, families to gather, sit and read and enjoy themselves."  

That's what Literacy Council's Hallye Terrell is hoping for when the project is complete.

"As a mom, I mean, I've spent lots of time at this park and lots of time at this playground. And, I think it'll be really nice to have an extra little seating area." she says. 

Tyler mother Iris Rodriguez says she'll use it.

"That would be good because people do come out here to read or just to be on their laptops or just kind of, you know, have their own time."

You can bring your own book or you can borrow one right here at the Little Free Library. It's right across from the pavilion. And, if you have books you'd like to donate, you can put those in the library, too.

"It's just kind of encouraging to see something going on in a local park."

Some of Boy Scout Troop 369 and a few volunteers are the muscle behind the construction.

This is also serving as Bruce Brookshire's project to become an Eagle Scout.

"Eagle Scout project is all about leadership and giving back to the community. So, I definitely feel like this project shows that." he says. 

Not only will there be chairs and places to relax, they're also building a small pathway.

"People cut across this area all the time, so it just gives people a pathway to walk on." says Brookshire. 

He just hopes his hard work pays off for the community.

"I think a lot of people are excited that some improvement projects are going on. And, it just- hopefully it'll look good." he says.

Terrell with the Literacy Council of Tyler says the Louis and Peaches Owen Heart Hospital gave them a generous endowment fund. Building this project is their way of recognizing and honoring them for the help.

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