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Sykes backs off petting zoo proposal

By By Fredie Carmichael/The Meridian Star
Aug. 31, 2001
Lauderdale County Supervisor Q.V. Sykes said Thursday he has halted plans to add a petting zoo at a new recreation center on Lovers' Lane.
But, he said, plans remain on track to install basketball goals, badminton equipment, volleyball equipment, pingpong tables and a portable sound system all in time for a Labor Day public event.
Earlier this week, Sykes outlined plans for a county-owned recreational area and petting zoo next to proposed baseball fields at Lovers' Lane. He said then that the zoo would include ducks, chickens, goats, a rabbit and a Shetland pony.
District 3 Supervisor Craig Hitt told fellow supervisors Thursday that he was glad the petting zoo is off. But, he said, he remains concerned about the security of the recreation area's planned sound system.
Sykes assured Hitt and other supervisors that the system was portable and would be safe. Sykes said he had plans for securing the system; he declined, though, to discuss details.
Hitt also said he fears a pond at the recreation area may be unsafe. The pond was created when dirt was removed for the proposed baseball fields; Sykes said early this week he plans to stock the pond with fish.
Board of Supervisors President Jimmie Smith, who represents District 2, said he plans to schedule a meeting at the site for all supervisors so they can see what's happening.
For now, Sykes said, all eyes are set on a Labor Day barbecue at the recreation area.
Fredie Carmichael is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. Call him at 693-1551, ext. 3228 or E-mail him at fcarmichael@themeridianstar.com