CVB eyes land near Welcome Center for proposed art park

February 23, 2010 9:22:00 AM

Allen Baswell - [email protected]


The grassy area next to the Tennessee Williams Welcome Center''s parking lot may be home to an art park if the Columbus Convention and Visitor''s Bureau can reach an agreement with the city to acquire the land. 


At Monday''s meeting of the CVB board of directors, which was held at the Stephen D. Lee home on Seventh Street North in Columbus, board member David Sanders presented a letter he drafted to present to Mayor Robert Smith seeking permission to have the city deed the land to the Columbus Cultural Heritage Foundation to establish a proposed art park on the site. 


"I plan to give it to (Smith) on Tuesday," Sanders said. 


CVB Executive Director and CEO James Tsismanakis discussed plans for the proposed art park, should everything come to fruition. 


"We want to put in a band stand, we would also like to have a statue of Tennessee Williams, the garage Josh Meadors (Disney artist born in Columbus) used and put a building on top of the garage to house special exhibits on Josh and other important people of the area," he said. 


Tsismanakis said he plans to discuss the proposed park at the regular March meeting 


The board unanimously approved awarding $15,000 to the Market Street Festival, which is scheduled in May. The board also unanimously approved 14,000 to the Air Base council for the Thunderbird Air Show, scheduled in mid-May. 


Board members also approved $42,000 for the Cabala''s King Cat Classic Championship. This national catfish tournament is scheduled to hold its qualifier round on April 3, and the actual tournament is set for Nov., 11-13, all at east bank of the Tombigbee River, Tsismanakis said. 


"This is an opportunity for us to get into the catfish tournaments. We have hosted bass fishing and crappie fishing tournaments in the past, so we want to get into something new," he said. 


Allen Baswell is a former staff reporter for The Dispatch