Mill Creek MetroParks is hosting a luau from 5:30 to 9 p.m. June 22 at the Lily Pond to raise funds for the restoration of the oldest man-made body of water in the park system.
A cash bar, a festive Caribbean dinner provided by chef David Armstrong of Cater 2 U and island music by the Calypso Gypsies Steel Drum Band will highlight the event.
"When I was a growing up in Youngstown, I was fortunate to have Mill Creek Park in my backyard," he said. "Unfortunately, the Lily Pond is in need of a major makeover. I have taken it upon myself to help raise funds to ensure the success of the restoration project," said Louis Schiavoni, president of the Mill Creek MetroParks Board of Commissioners.
Photo special to the Town Crier
Preparing for the Mill Creek MetroParks' Luau at the Lily Pond are, from left, Kirsten Peetz, MetroParks natural resources manager; Jessica Thompson, Clear Channel account executive; Atty. Louis Schiavoni, MetroParks board of commissioners president; Terri Parker, administrator, Schiavoni, Schiavoni, Bush & Muldowney; April Stanislaw, MetroParks marketing manager; and Linda Kostka, MetroParks development and marketing.
Migrating waterfowl and resident goldfish have made this 3.25-acre pond a popular site since 1896. For over a century, visitors have enjoyed this area by hiking The Lily Pond Circle Trail which loops around the pond.
The Lily Pond has suffered through the decades, partially as a result of geese and duck congregation. Some of the planned improvements include addressing parking lot and drainage issues, creating a boardwalk and restoring landscaping that has been destroyed over the years by the Canada geese.
Reservations can be made by calling the MetroParks at 330-702-3000. The Lily Pond is located at the end of McCollum Road in Youngstown. It will be held in the parking lot under a tent.
"This is really going to be a fun event for the community," said Linda Kostka, development director of Mill Creek MetroParks. "The Lily Pond is a very treasured feature of the parks, and together we can restore it for future generations to enjoy."