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On the Record....
submitted January 2018
You may have seen the article on the front page of the AbbevilleMeridional’s Friday, December 29 edition featuring Palmetto Island State Park called “Palmetto State Park preparing”. We’d like to thank the Meridional for highlighting the park and sharing parts of the article that were published in a Baton Rouge paper about the budget cuts to State Parks. I can’t and won’t comment on how or if the budget cuts will impact Palmetto Island State Park, because we (Friends’) just don’t know. The state doesn’t share that kind of info with us. A lot of times, we find out the same way you do. Read more
New BBQ Pits and Bike Racks
submitted January 2018
Friends of Palmetto purchased and donated 6 new Bar B Q pits for the decks at the cabins and 10 bike racks. Camp host Jerry Fazackerley was kind enough to put the bike racks together and placed them throughout the park. He also put the pits together and got camphost Tim Hensley and park staff member Everett Broussard to help him with the installation. Fellas, we really appreciate all your help with these projects. We hope patrons will enjoy these additions to the park.
New Entrance Fence
submitted December 2017
A new front gate was made by members of Friends of Palmetto and it was installed at the entrance of Palmetto Island State Park. The old one was made of wood and was in disrepair.
Waterline to Palmetto Island Pavilions Project
submitted August 2017
The Friends of Palmetto Island State Park are happy to announce the completion of another project to better your park experience. Water faucets have been installed at all four pavilions and a faucet has been added to the outside of the Canoe Launch bathhouse. This enhancement project will benefit patrons and staff since it will allow easier cleanup by having access to running water. Proceeds from this year’s Stir the Pot Festival allowed the Friends of Palmetto Island State Park to fund the project. This is a great example of patrons’ donations at work!
The Friends of Palmetto Island State Park would like to give a special thank you to Office of State Parks staff members, Craig and Keith, and to Palmetto Island crew Johnny and Everett who helped make this project possible. The pavilions are available to rent for $50 a day each and have a maximum occupancy of 40 people each. Reservations can be made online at www.ReserveLaStateParks.com. These are great spots to host birthday parties and family gatherings.
7 TH ANNUAL STIR THE POT: LOUISIANA SEAFOOD COOK-OFF A SUCCESS!
submitted by Alison Miller, May 1, 2017
The 7th Annual “Stir the Pot: Louisiana Seafood Cook-off and Festival” was recently held at Palmetto Island State Park and featured 21 teams entering 23 dishes in the cook-off for a chance to win cash prizes. The Beau Young Band entertained the crowd, while festival goers were able to bid on plenty of items during the live and silent auctions. Several local craftsmen and vendor sold their items and organizations gave talks on things that are found in nature. There were over 1,000 people in attendance and the event raised nearly $18,000 for the park. Cook-off winners in the Seafood category were 1st place, Pecan Island Fishing Buddies with their Shrimp, Crab and Redfish Stew; 2nd place went to CF&S Tank Company with their Catfish Courtbouillon; 3rd place was won by Glenn Lege Construction with Shrimp Quesadillas. In the Wild Game category, the Henry Volunteer Fire Department placed 1st with Pork Grillades; Mimi’s Catering came in 2nd with their Pot Roasted Duck Breast and Meaux Brothers LLC won 3rd place with Deer Sausage Sauce Piquante. “Stir the Pot: Louisiana Seafood Cook-off and Festival” is organized by the non-profit group, Friends of Palmetto Island State Park, Inc. The goal of the event is to raise funds to continue to put on events throughout the year and to help the park with needed items that the state’s budget would not be able to cover. Since organizing in 2011, the Friends of Palmetto Island State Park have donated over 30,000 volunteer hours and raised over $280,000 for the Park. Stir the Pot is held annually the Saturday after Easter Sunday. For more information visit here.
OFFICE OF STATE PARKS REVISES FEE STRUCTURE
submitted Wednesday, March 1, 2017
The Office of State Parks announces updates to regulations and necessary fee adjustments, effective March 1. In addition to fee changes, guests now will be charged applicable state and local sales taxes. Existing reservations for overnight accommodations will be honored at the price structure in place when the reservations were originally made.
Get complete list of fee schedule and regulation change.
FIREMAN = FRIENDS
submitted Wednesday, September 7, 2016
August brought Vermilion Parish over 24 inches of rain. While the park did not have any damage the water was higher than normal and access to the park was limited. As the water receded along the Vermilion River it left a thick layer of mud at the boat launch making it very slippery. Upon request, members of the 7th Ward Fire Department came over and rinsed off the mud at the boat launch so that access would be safe for patrons. We appreciate all that these guys and girls do for our community and our park. Thank you!
submitted Sunday, October 2, 2016
Even though last month’s 25+ inch rain didn’t cause damage to Palmetto Island, the only road leading to the park stayed covered for several days. After the rain stopped the ground stayed saturated for some time. Park staff realized that the mud from the earth below the playground had risen through the existing mulch creating a different kind of playground for the kids.
Friends of Palmetto Island, camp hosts and staff moved the play ground border, eliminating wasted space. We then filled the holes, laid barrier material and spread a layer of rubber mulch over the top of the surface. We are hoping that our mulch investment will last long this time. The kids seem to be enjoying the new cushioned surface.
A DAY OF CONSERVATION EDUCATION
submitted August 2016
Vermilion Soil and Water Conservation District, LA Wildlife and Fisheries, Louisiana Bird Observatory and Louisiana Amphibian and Reptile Enthusiast volunteered to each set up a station near the splash pad and visit with park patrons about their ongoing conservation efforts. Friends of Palmetto Island manned the Nature center for the day. Each station reported that they got to visit with between 35 – 50 people. Everyone was very pleased with the count and interest of the people and the children who did visit their stations and are willing to partner again in the future. I was excited by the interest, taking into consideration that it was held on a Thursday. I think that most people appreciated having al little something extra to attract their attention and seemed to appreciate the efforts of all the volunteers involved. Thanks to all these groups and agencies for helping us make this an interesting and fun day at Palmetto Island State Park.
2016 LOUISIANA DUTCH OVEN GATHERING
submitted July 2016
You all know that Friends of Palmetto Island have a special relationship with Latanier Cookers. There’s just no denying it. Even though it’s a month after the event has passed, we really want to share this information with you. We think this organization is great for the park and our community.
BE WILDLIFE AWARE
submitted June 2016
Palmetto Island State Park is not just a campground. It’s also a nature preserve and home to a large variety of wildlife. I think sometimes visitors don’t realize how close to nature the park really brings them. Sometimes when we share these spaces with wildlife they become accustomed to our presence and will overcome their natural fear of us and begin to associate our presence with the opportunity of taking our food or trash as a free meal.
PUBLIC & PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP AT WORK
submitted March 2016
The nature trail boardwalk at Palmetto Island State Park has been replaced, courtesy of a $20,000 private donation received by the Friends of Palmetto Island State Park, Inc. The boardwalk, leading from the nature center into the nearby palmetto swamp areas, provides a pleasant stroll with benches and educational signage on the native Abbeville Red Iris and Prothonotary Warbler. The boardwalk and accompanying overlook now also bears a plaque in commemoration of Ruth Villien, a local teacher who impacted the lives of many students at Abbeville High School. The project, completed in nine days by Louisiana State Parks maintenance staff from around the state, doubled the number of benches and replaced the 225 feet of walkway and the 30'x30' deck. The TimberTek composite decking - more resilient to the swamp and humidity than the original materials - and other necessary supplies were purchased by the Friends group, with the donated funds.
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