Clean up time. On Saturday, Oct 30, volunteers will be gathering at the Eugene McCray City Park on the city’s far Southeast Side to begin the massive job of cleaning up the long-neglected park named for the area’s late city council representative who made the park possible in the late 1990s.  Jay Johnson, a local neighborhood activist, is spearheading the clean up slated to start at 9 a.m.  Food and drinks will be served to the volunteers at noon. The park is located at 3449 Quail Road on the west side of Lake Arlington and serves a predominantly minority neighborhood. Call 817-902-7430 for more information and directions.

Johnson has long pushed the city to maintain the park with little success, he said, as the city kept citing money problems.  But this time his perseverance has paid off as the city has promised to provide volunteers from the county who are minor offenders assigned to community service as well as trucks to haul off the garbage and debris that litters large segments of the park — which is also a favorite hang-out for the homeless.  With gas drilling on nearby city land that Johnson says has produced about $200,000 for the city, he argues that the city should dedicate a portion of that money to maintain the park. Good luck on that one.