Park-goers want downed tree removed from Overton Park

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - One month ago, 140,000 MLGW customers were left in the dark after strong storms blew through Memphis.

While all the power has been restored, not all the damage has been cleaned up.

Delsie Payne said she went to Overton Park a couple of weeks after the storm and saw a massive tree knocked over by the storm lying in the park.

She was shocked to find it still there a few weeks later.

"We wonder why they don't get the tree up," Payne said.

The 180-year-old tree has half of the dog park Overton Bark closed.

"I wonder whose responsibility it is to get the tree up, why they got it just laying there like nobody cares?" Payne asked.

Ashley Janway said it's a growing annoyance for large dog owners like herself.

"It's definitely bothersome," Janway said. "You don't' know when they are going to take care of it and it's going to be a big job obviously."

Now, dogs of all sizes have to play in the same space, and Janway said that's creating some tension between people and their pets.

"Some small dog owners only want them to be around small dogs," Janway said.

The Overton Park Conservancy said the City of Memphis's agreement with the OPC states the city is responsible for tree removal, and this tree is not a priority.

"That one is just sitting there," said Melissa McMasters with OPC. "It's not hurting anyone, so understandably, it's pretty far down on the list, so it will be gotten to soon."

OPC staff said they hope the city will chop it up in a couple weeks. For park-goers, the sooner they clean it up the better.

"Amazing to me that nobody is getting that tree up," Payne said.

A city spokesperson said they're aware of this tree and prioritizing debris removal within city's parks and golf courses based on areas hit the hardest.

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