Little River State Park, nestled just off Interstate 65 at the Atmore Exit 57, sits on approximately 2,000 acres of long-leaf pines. This is a unique piece of forestry. With a 25-acre lake, it’s a place offering activities such as hiking, horse trails, swimming, boating, fishing and camping. Camping sites offer primitive as well as full RV hookups. There are pavilions for rent that are perfect for reunions, birthday parties or holiday gatherings. There is also a playground for the kids to enjoy.
Pictured from left are Tracy Sells, RC&D board member and secretary; Larry White, RC&D board member and Escambia County commissioner; Nanice Godwin, RC&D executive director; Alabama Representative Harry Shiver; Rick Murphy, IMOM chief executive director; Otis French, chairman of RC&D; and Dawn Cave, LRSP manager.
LRSP is funded by public entry fees, rentals and donations. All funds taken in at LRSP go directly back into the park for operations and improvements.
Iron Men Outdoor Ministries manages LRSP. The purpose of IMOM managing this park is to provide a place for retreat, healing and time away from hustle in the surroundings of God’s great outdoors. IMOM has worked diligently to make the park more wheelchair accessible, and family friendly.
Oct. 25, 2016, IMOM was presented with a $10,000 grant provided by the Gulf Coast Resource Conservation & Development Council. Through this grant, numerous upgrades and improvements have been made this year. IMOM was able to purchase a much-needed golf cart, repair grills, and repair and add picnic tables. In addition, they built two water slides, a floating dock and a new pier.
Beatrice Elementary School donated playground equipment. With these funds and the help of volunteers, this equipment was moved and installed at the park. Now, with added activities and upgrades, the park is looking forward to generating more tourism activity and renewing interest in the park from locals.
State Representative Harry Shiver connected IMOM with RC&D. During a presentation, various ways were discussed to improve and keep the park open.
As they sat on the porch overlooking the lake, Shiver shared his memories of coming to Little River as a young boy and fondly remembered swimming and attending dances. Otis French, chairman of RC&D, described the park as a place of serenity. RC&D Board Member and Secretary Tracy Sells offered advice on managing the park. RC&D Board Member and Escambia County’s Commissioner Larry White discussed means of advertisement. Janice Godwin, executive director, helped with the application process and has visited the park on numerous occasions through the years.
IMOM Chief Executive Director Rick Murphy, IMOM Secretary/Treasurer Mindy Newell and Park Director Dawn Cave left the meeting reassured that it was important for the area and community for LRSP to remain open to the public and serving those with disabilities.
It’s going to take help from the community, park entry fees and rentals, volunteers and donations to sustain Little River State Forest. The serenity, history and beauty are ready to be shown off and taken in.
The park is open daily 9 a.m.-5 p.m. It is located just off Interstate 65 at Exit 57. Drive 11 miles West on Hwy 21 to 580 H. Kyle Road. Call Little River at 251-862-2511 and speak to Dawn Cave if you have any questions or would like to book a pavilion for a party or family reunion.
Visit our website at www.IronMenOutdoorMinistries.org for more information and click on Little River State Park.