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A grassroots effort has recently formed to clean up Winnsboro’s walking trail located at Civitan Park.

After 20 years of use, the walking trail needs some “tender, loving care,” said Kay LaFrance, project volunteer. Residents throughout Franklin Parish take advantage of the one-mile trail which winds through shaded areas, beside ponds and connects with Davis Park’s walking trail.

“The walking trail has always been beautiful and always will be beautiful,” LaFrance said. “It now just needs some attention before it gets out of hand.”

The effort started after comments were posted on social media asking for volunteers to help clean the trail. Since then volunteers have been busy picking up limbs, trash and cutting down dead trees, LaFrance said.

“The pavement is still in good shape,” she said. “But, there are other areas that need to be cleaned up.”

Other areas include mowing underbrush, ditches and the two mounds, refurbishing mile markers and repairs to the two bridges and picnic areas.

Bridges, exercise and picnic areas were constructed during the beginning phases of the park by local Boy Scouts as an Eagle Scout project.

“People take pictures by the bridges all the time,” LaFrance said. “It’s a beautiful area that needs a little attention.”

Town of Winnsboro workers cleared debris and weeds from the ponds this week and will continue to work with volunteers.

Meanwhile, the Garden Gate Study Club and the Franklin Parish Tourism Commission have joined forces to “spruce up” Baldwin Park, said Lisa Kiper, Tourism Commission chairman.

Baldwin Park is located between Civitan Park and Davis Park and features the iconic windmill along with a large flower bed, stone benches and a bridge.

“Not only are we going to have our tulips but now Baldwin Park will feature flowers in its bed year around thanks to Curtis Hilbun,” Kiper said. “In just a few months, members of Garden Gate Study Club will start cleaning Baldwin Park.”

A welcoming entrance such as Baldwin Park not only helps Winnsboro but all of Franklin Parish and promotes tourism, Kiper said.

For more information on how to volunteer contact Kay LaFrance through her Facebook page.

“This is our walking trail,” LaFrance said. “It is up to us to keep it up. We must take ownership of it.”

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