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New picnic tables have been installed at Chambers County Lake. --Dustin Duncan

Chambers County Lake gets upgrades

Ted and Mike Craig are hoping to make Chambers County Lake just a bit better in 2019.

The brothers are both managers of the lake in LaFayette, and they received a couple of grants this year to help make upgrades along the way.

Ted Craig said the first grant came from the Alabama Extension at Auburn University for $34,000. He said with that money, the lake is in the process of installing a new playground for children at the lake.

He said the lake is supposed to be a recreational area, but at the moment there isn’t anything for children to do who don’t like to fish.

“You can only hold a child’s attention span so long,” he said.

The new playground is being installed by the Chambers County Sheriff’s Department and should be done in about 30 days, Craig said.

The playground will be in walking distance to all amenities, and there will be picnic tables and benches for parents near the play area.

“We wanted to give them something substantial to do,” Craig said. “It is not a like a playground at a school — this is going to be spread out.”

The lake also received a $2,000 grant from the Chambers County Commission in early October. That grant served as funds to purchase new picnic tables while reconditioning some of the concrete tables already being used at the lake. The money also allowed the brothers to buy 25 new in-ground grills, which are being installed by the managers themselves.

Craig said the lake will be ready to show off all its new equipment with a grand reopening Feb. 1.

He said the upgrades are all in an attempt to give people more to do and a reason to come out to the lake. He said the lake was built in the early 60s as nothing but a fishing lake.

“What we are trying to do is create some community activities,” Craig said.

“We’d like to make something for everybody.”

He said the lake has doubled the number of campsites on the property, bringing the number to nine. Additionally, he said a generator can run all night at the campgrounds, as opposed to in the past when those would have to be shut off about 9 p.m.

Each campsite also has a grill and a table now.

“That adds a bunch to the campsites,” Craig said.

He said more upgrades could be coming to the lake as well, including upgrading the walking trails near the lake, which haven’t been worked on in about 15 to 20 years.