The Gautier City Park located at 902 De La Point Drive, was renamed in 2002 to George W. Martin City Park. Mr. Martin, who at the time was 84 years of age, had been a volunteer for the community since 1986. His goal was to improve the city image, all on his own time and for free. He could be found picking up liter, doing landscape work or trimming trees throughout Gautier.
The Park is under the direction of the City of Gautier Parks and Recreation division. They have worked diligently over the years to bring many amenities to the park.
Situated adjacent to the Mary Walker Bayou, the boat ramp offers quick access to the Pascagoula River. Boaters have ample parking for vehicles and trailers and launching is free. Anglers can make use of the long fishing pier next to the boat ramp.
Just to the right of the boat ramp is the Senior Citizens Center, which offers activities to seniors in the form of arts and crafts, fitness and aerobics, pottery, water painting, Bingo, card games and more. Seniors have parking right next to the building for easy access.
As part of the ongoing improvements, the City constructed a splash pad and playground, which opened in 2016. The play area is themed around local flora, fauna and creatures. Kids love getting gently sprayed by the school mascot Ali-the-Gator. Young ones and old alike enjoy getting cooled off by butterflies, bees and flowers that spray streams of water. The best way to get cooled off in the summer heat is to stand under the dumping buckets, waiting in anticipation until they are filled, then they dump buckets of water on the heads of anyone around. The water is supplied by the City of Gautier water system and the flow automatically stops if no one is using the park. This is the best free entertainment for kids, who will spend hours playing and don’t want to leave.
Several pavilions are available for rent in the park. They are fantastic settings for parties, birthdays or reunions and all are strategically placed close to the parks clean and ample restrooms.
Recently in 2019, realizing that residents are so interested in the outdoors, the City used tideland funds and trail grants to install a biking/walking trail. The trail is part of Jackson County’s Bicycle, Pedestrian and Trails Master Plan. This new expansion to the park consists of a ¾ mile long, 8-foot wide asphalt loop, which features 10 fitness stations. There are entrances from the senior center, the splash pad and the old historical school.
The George W. Martin City Park is open from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. The Splash Pad, however, is closed during the winter months, but the playground is open year-round.
For more information about the Gautier Senior Center call: 228-497-5189. Pavilion reservations can be requested online.