Picayune to host Cal Ripken tournament

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Picayune city leaders hope the upcoming Cal Ripken League regional tournament at Friendship Park will prompt a bevy of visitors.
Tuesday, City Council members approved a motion for Mayor Ed Pinero Jr. to sign an agreement with the Cal Ripken League to host a regional tournament for 7-year-olds in June.
Parks and Recreation Director Trevor Adam said the event could result in a huge economic impact for the city, bringing in dozens of families for at least a four-day stay in the city. As their children participate in the tournament, the families stay in area hotels, eat at area restaurants and buy from local retailers.
Pete McGoey, the district commissioner for the league, said he’s known Adam for years, and when his boss asked him about the best place to host the tournament, McGoey suggested Picayune.
Adam said that half of the concession sales during the tournament will go back to the city; the other half will go to the Picayune Youth Athletics Association. Other than that, the city will benefit from the sales tax generated when the visitors spend money in the city.
“That’s what it’s all about is people coming here and enjoying Picayune,” Adam said.
In other business, the Council approved a motion to extend the city’s contract with AAA Ambulance Service. When asked if the city is satisfied with the service the company has provided so far, Fire Chief Keith Brown said that there have been few if any complaints, and the complaints that have been lodged have been addressed.
Soon, the Fire Department will receive a new arson dog. During Tuesday’s meeting, the Council approved a motion to send Fire Marshal Pat Weaver to Concord, New Hampshire to obtain the department’s new arson dog. That month-long trip is planned for April 2 to May 1, with all expenses being paid by State Farm Insurance.
Brown said that the new arson dog is needed because the current arson dog, Joanie, is about 13-years-old and has been experiencing breathing issues.
He said that once Joanie does retire, Weaver will continue to care for her while also caring for the new arson dog.
When asked about the current need for an arson dog in the city, Brown said that she has been not only a service to the city, but also assisted in the investigation of fires in the county and in surrounding areas as far as Biloxi and Long Beach.
In other business the Council:
—Approved a motion to accept a $1,977 donation from the Picayune Police Officer’s Association to be used at Friendship Park for the installation of concrete pads and benches at the splash pad.
— Approved out of state travel for Det. Christa Groom from Aug. 7 to 10 to attend training in Dallas, Texas pertaining to crimes against children.
— Approved out of state travel for Capt. R. Rickoll from May 2 to 4 to attend CAD Dispatch system training in Baton Rouge, La.
— Approved out of state travel for Brown to attend the International Association of Fire Chief’s Board meeting from March 18 to 22 in Reno, Nevada. All expenses will be paid by IAFC.
— Approved out of state travel for Brown to attend Congressional Fire Services Institute Symposium from April 4 to 7 in Washington, D.C. The trip will be co-funded by the city and the Mississippi Fire Chief’s Association.
The next Council meeting will be March 7 at 5 p.m.

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