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City of Clemson seeking volunteers to help redeck Abernathy Park boardwalk

DAVID PEREZ // Photo Editor

The city of Clemson is looking for volunteers to help redeck the Abernathy Park boardwalk over Spring Break. 

After 15 years of wear and tear, the city of Clemson is planning to make repairs to the boardwalk at Abernathy Park. 

During Clemson University’s spring break (March 19-24), the city will complete the first phase of the project — re-decking the boardwalk. They’re asking members of the local community to help out.

“We hope to have enough [volunteers] that folks will be able to trade-off jobs and take turns doing things to make it more comfortable,” city administrator Rick Cotton said. “It goes back to the old saying that ‘many hands make for lighter work.’” 

The city will need about 70 volunteers each day to assist with removing the old decking, cutting and placing the new decking and clearing brush. 

Each day will be divided into two shifts, 8 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Volunteers can sign up for one shift, multiple shifts, and/or multiple days. 

Volunteers must wear closed-toe shoes (work boots if possible) and are strongly encouraged to wear long pants and long sleeves. An EMS crew will be on site in case of emergencies, and their will be a designated crew member to monitor and enforce safety policies. 

The city will also provide volunteers with lunch and a commemorative t-shirt (shirts guaranteed for those who sign up by March 2). The city is also working to secure parking for volunteers.

The city has selected Trex, a composite material, to re-deck the boardwalk. Cotton said the material has greater durability and is expected to last 25 to 30 years. 

The city is spending about $135,000 on materials, Cotton said. Lowe’s has deeply discounted the price of the Trex material. In addition, TTI out of Anderson is supplying power tools that’ll be used to re-deck the boardwalk. 

Cotton said that the city is hoping to complete the re-decking over Spring Break. 

“Obviously the weather’s going to have a lot to do with it. If it’s raining, we won’t work that day,” Cotton said. “We’ll get as much as we possibly can.”

If for some reason the re-decking isn’t complete, it’ll be finished up at a later time. Cotton added that the city is also planning to replace the boardwalk’s handrails and will do that later this spring or over the summer. 

The city plans to use the money saved on the boardwalk repairs to eventually dredge the lake, which has been dry due to an ongoing drought.  

Cotton said the city is excited about the project and hopes Clemson students will get involved.

“I think it’s really neat that students who get involved now, when they come back for Homecoming in 10 years and have a five-year-old with them, they can walk down there and say ‘I helped do this,’” Cotton said. 

Those who are interested in volunteering can sign-up on the City of Clemson website ( under the “Our Community” tab.

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