Wetland Watchers Park
I am so excited to get this trail construction started after so many years of planning! After Katrina hit, we all worked together to clear new paths for the future – now it is time to start building them!The LaBranche Wetland Watcher service-learning project was started eleven years ago as a way to utilize our beautiful Louisiana wetlands as an outdoor classroom where students could be fully immersed in science while learning about the many values of our wetlands and the many challenges that they face. We adopted a small tract of land to improve it for our field studies and to attempt to keep it from washing away.The small tract of land we adopted was included in 28 acres of land donated to our project by the Pontchartrain Levee Board in 2004. In April of 2006, this area was dedicated as Wetland Watchers Park by the St. Charles Parish Government. We have funding to begin construction on the park which will eventually include nearly a mile of boardwalk nature trails, two outdoor classrooms, a 10 foot marsh overlook, at least 5 learning pad areas, andplenty of benches to rest along the way. During the last session, Governor Jindal dedicated $200,000 towards a pavilion, fishing piers, canoe/kayak launch, and other improvements to the front section of the park.
St. Charles Parish has some of the most beautiful wetlands in the state, but no nature trails to allow people easy access to enjoy them. Working together we are going to provide a place for our local families can picnic and fish, where tourists can actually venture deep into the LaBranche wetlands without needing a boat, and schools throughout our region can utilize this natural wonder so young people can learn to appreciate this incredible resource that has meant so much to Louisiana culture and history. This area is dedicated to education, recreation, and restoration. As we begin this project, it is important to realize that we are building a legacy that our kids and their kids will be able to enjoy. Thank you for all that you have done. I cannot wait until we are all able to enjoy this park together!
Wetland Watchers Service-Learning Project Coordinator
Harry Hurst Middle School