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Park looks for votes
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Veterans Memorial Park is competing for a $100,000 grant and to be voted as "America's Favorite Park" in a nationwide competition sponsored by the Coca-Cola Company and FourSquare.

The park that tallies the most votes receives the title and the grant, which can be used for park needs.

Grants for runners-up are available and include $50,000 for second, $25,000 for third, and $25,000 given to one randomly chosen park in the top 25.

The Coca-Cola Company, according to its Web site, allows for the money to be used to "help restore, rebuild or enhance activity areas in parks..., but it's ultimately up to winning parks to determine their exact needs."

Buffie Hamil, programs coordinator for Dawson County parks, nominated Veterans Memorial and commented on what the money will be used for.

"The pool house basically needs to be demolished and started from scratch. The football building, we'd love to expand on it someday, adding restrooms and a concession stand," Hamil said.

The plan is to renovate the football complex into a centralized area housing restrooms, concession stands and park storage. Current storage is in scattered buildings around the park.

As of Monday afternoon, the park was in 121st place with 1,689 votes.

Any legal resident of the United States 13 years or older is eligible to vote. Smartphone users have a greater advantage.

"If you check-in at the park with the FourSquare app on your phone, that counts for 100 votes," Hamil said.

Participants first must link their FourSquare accounts with the contest for their ‘check-ins' to count.

To vote, go to

Voting ends on July 15.