News From Terre Haute, Indiana

March 26, 2013

Park Board approves community garden

Families by Choice to conduct ‘Box-In’ at Gilbert Park

Sue Loughlin
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — The Terre Haute Park Board on Monday approved requests by two outside groups, one for a community garden and another for an event at Gilbert Park to raise awareness about homelessness. The four-member board approved the Purdue Extension Service’s request for use of 2,000 square feet of outdoor space for a community garden at Booker T. Washington Community Center, west of the building. The garden would be 40 feet by 50 feet.

The extension service wants to use the space as an education workshop area and garden. It would offer community workshops, teach children about gardening through Camp Rave and partner with CASY (Community Alliance and Services for Young Children) to provide training to day care providers.

Produce would go to the Booker T. Washington kitchen to be served to children. Extra produce would go to area soup kitchens.

The extension will oversee the garden and educational workshops. The parks department will provide access to water and fencing, if needed.

The extension currently has two 4-foot by 12-foot raised beds at the site.

The board also approved a request from Families by Choice to conduct a “Box-In” the night of April 19 at Gilbert Park.

The organization asked for approval to use the park overnight. The event would be a fundraiser for Families by Choice and it would also raise awareness about homelessness.

The board also awarded a bid to Wright’s Pool Service to sandblast, resurface and paint the Deming Park pool. The cost is $23,200. Two bids were submitted, and Wright’s provided the low bid.

The pool has cracks, and there has been some concern about possible leaks, said Eddie Bird, parks superintendent.

In other matters, Bird said he would like to look into the possibility of having a fifth parks board member. “It’s kind of hard to get three people together sometimes,” he said.

A 1973 city ordinance makes reference to a school board member serving on the park board, Bird said. “That could be our fifth person.”

Bird has asked the city legal department to research the matter, and he will then advise the parks board.

Board members are Mike Webster, Nancy Cummins, John Wright and Gordon Bryan.

Sue Loughlin can be reached at 812-231-4235 or