Crater Potholes Get Fixed
By Margi Jenks
Visitors to the Crater of Diamonds State Park are enjoying a major change as they pull into our main mine parking lot. This past week Tri-State Asphalt from Lockesburg, AR, has been working on re-paving our parking lot. Rain has delayed the project, but they hope to be finished by next Wednesday, December 12th.
This major maintenance project will cost approximately $130,000, and will result in a completely redesigned and re-engineered lot. The last time the parking lot received attention was 10 to 12 years ago, so it has needed a facelift for the past several years. The traffic flow has also needed changes so that RV’s and semi-trucks would have a clearer route to the overflow parking lot, which is on the north side of the main parking lot.
Tri-State Asphalt is doing a number of projects to make the parking area paving last longer. They are adding curbs and drains to channel rainwater, have packed the areas where the asphalt is missing, and are laying down 2”-4” of asphalt overlay.
In the paving process we have gained 20 to 30 parking spaces for a new total of 210 spaces. The spaces nearest the visitor center will still have plenty of parking for disabled visitors, motorcycles, and park emergency vehicles.
In another project the park maintenance department has begun working on changes to the handicap-accessible part of our River Trail, which is accessed from the park campground. We look forward to telling our visitors about these improvements when they are finished just before Christmas.
Search area last plowed: December 4, 2012; Most recent significant rainstorm: 1.5 inches on November 16th.
Total diamonds found in 2012: 511
Diamonds registered for November 25 – December 9, 2012 (100 points = 1 carat):
November 25 and 26 – No diamonds were registered
November 27 – Drondia Byers, Murfreesboro, AR, 4 pt. white, 5 pt. yellow, 13 pt. white, 16 pt. white; Doug Lay, Hernando FL, 2 pt. white, 5 pt. yellow, 12 pt. yellow, 24 pt. brown, 1.95 ct. brown; Bryan & Jessica Brunson, Pollock, LA, 20 pt. white; Chip Burnette, Killeen, TX, 58 pt. white; Brian Armstrong, Harker Heights, TX, 18 pt. yellow
November 28 – Jim Graham, Prescott, AR, 40 pt. white
November 29 – Ted Olsen & Adam Hardin, Finleyson, MN, 13 pt. yellow; Doug Lay, Hernando, FL, 5 pt. brown, 20 pt. white, 30 pt. brown
November 30 – Lennie Anderson, Grand Forks, ND, 16 pt. white; David Anderson, Murfreesboro, AR, 3 pt. white, 4 pt. white, 6 pt. yellow, 34 pt. brown
December 1 – Kenny & Melissa Oliver, Rosston, AR, 33 pt. yellow
December 2 – No diamonds were registered
December 3 – David Anderson, Murfreesboro, AR, 44 pt. yellow
December 4 to 7 – No diamonds were registered
December 8 – Tom Suboski, Bradenton, FL, 57 pt. brown; Kenny & Melissa Oliver, Rosston, AR, 4 pt. white, 6 pt. white