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Groundbreaking for Lovejoy HOPE park

Volunteers to cleannew venue

LOVEJOY — Officials for a new and unique park are scheduled to host a groundbreaking ceremony and clean-up project.

Saturday, Southern Crescent Sports Foundation (SCSF) will hold the official groundbreaking of Helping Other People Excel (HOPE) park, located at 11578 East Lovejoy Road, in Lovejoy.

The clean up project will begin at 9 a.m., and continue until 3 p.m. The groundbreaking ceremony will be at noon, according to Dawn Davis, Executive Director of SCSF.

Davis said HOPE Park is a sports venue which includes a community garden, walking trails and an all accessible playground.

“HOPE Park is more than just a park for handicapped children and typical children to play together,” Davis said. “The mission for HOPE Park is to make a difference in young people’s lives by showing the cause and effect of hard work, integrity and perseverance by providing high level sports training and competition at reasonable costs.”

The park will be designed to accommodate sports such as baseball, softball, football, soccer, lacrosse, basketball and a miracle field, which is a baseball field for special needs players.

David Clark, president of SCSF, and Lovejoy Mayor Bobby Cartwright will take part in the groundbreaking ceremony. The park is privately owned by Clark and his wife, Linda, who also serves as vice president of the SCSF.

The walking trail, which is scheduled to be built around the perimeter of the park, will be made of recycled materials, complete with “HealthBeat” machines, making it both “Green” and healthy, said Davis.

“HOPE Park will be the first park of its kind in Clayton County,” she added. “We will use the park and sports venue to develop jobs and life skills by providing training and employment opportunities through partnering with local business, civic, and educational organizations.”

Davis said the cost to participate in all of the sport teams will be based on a sliding scale for those who cannot afford the cost to play sports in their school or on little league teams.

“We want everyone to be able to play, regardless of their ability, whether or not if they have a physical, mental or financial challenge,” Davis said.

To volunteer for the Hands for HOPE clean-up project or want more information on how to get involved with HOPE Park, call 770-692-5945 or visit www.scsf-lj.org.