SAND SPRINGS — Between 350 and 400 volunteers gathered in Case Community Park to help clean up debris after the park was inundated in the floods last week.
A network of local churches and city staff organized the event to clean up the 120-acre park on Saturday after it took on between 8 and 10 feet of water in some places during last month’s flood.
“It’s been great,” Sand Springs Parks Director Jeff Edwards said of the volunteer effort. “I think we’ve got between 350 and 400 people volunteering at seven sites (throughout the park).”
HillSpring Church Associate Pastor Matt Barnett, whose church is part of the network that helped organize the event, said they only expected about 300 people, so they were happy with the turnout.
Dave Leung, who helps coach soccer at Case Community Park, was among the volunteers helping clean up the park Saturday.
“It’s kind of devastating to see the damage to the entire park,” Leung said. “(The volunteer effort) just shows the heart of the people of Sand Springs.”
He said a lot of families and children that play soccer came to the park to help with the cleanup effort, too.
Amanda Hillis volunteered at the park with her church during the event and said her son plays soccer there.
“I wanted to volunteer to be the hands and feet of Jesus and help rebuild after the flood,” Hillis said.
Edwards previously told the Leader that it will likely take “hundreds of thousands of dollars” and months before the park is reopened.
The concessions areas and bathroom facilities will have to be remediated, the playgrounds will have to be resurfaced and there’s potentially substantial damage to electrical infrastructure, the BMX area and fields. However, parks staff were able to move tables, benches and trash cans before the park flooded, which saved between $100,000 and $150,000 in equipment.