Vidalia leaders look ahead to new developments in 2019

Published 12:15 am Wednesday, December 12, 2018


VIDALIA —The Vidalia Board of Aldermen ended its last meeting of the year with the beginning of new developments and businesses that should be open in early 2019.

Aldermen approved occupational licenses for two new developments on Carter Street: a new Dollar Tree store officials anticipate will open by Jan. 25, as well as a seafood market and boil.

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Barry Richardson, the owner of Craws, Claws & Tails LLC, 304 Carter St., said he hopes to be open for business by mid-February.

“It will be more or less like a boiling house, with crawfish, crab and shrimp,” Richardson said. “I’m also going to have a small seafood market.”

Richardson said he has been in the crawfish business for approximately 20 years in the Concordia Parish and raises his own product.

“I produce a lot of crawfish … 400,000 pounds more or less,” he said. “I can supply myself and give a good price to everyone in the community.”

Meanwhile, the town officials showed their support for the construction of a Vietnam veterans’ memorial wall — similar to the one in Washington, D.C., that would be 272-feet long and 8-feet tall.

The project, undertaken by Point Man International Ministries/Miss-Lou, would cost roughly $300,000 to complete, said Doug McCallister, Outpost Leader of Point Man International.

McCallister said Point Man International’s goal is to pay respect to veterans and their loved ones, a cause that he — as a veteran — feels passionate about, he said.

“One thing that motivates me to be a part of this project is the mere fact that my name is not on that wall (in Washington D.C.), but for the unmerited favor of God it would’ve been any number of times.”

The location of the wall is yet to be determined, officials said. However, McCallister discussed building the wall on the Vidalia Riverfront because its serenity makes it ideal for the project, he said.

McCallister said construction would begin after Point Man International is able to garner enough funds for the project.

The board unanimously approved the transfer of $5,000 to assist with the project out of a fund created in 2015 by a non-profit entity called Delta Region Community Foundation.

The foundation created the fund to assist with economic development projects, town officials said, but the money was never used.

“Once we’ve finished this transaction, we’d like to create an official ‘launch date’ … and establish when we could break ground on this project,” McCallister said.

In other matters during Tuesday evening’s meeting of the Mayor and Board of Aldermen, the board:

  • Unanimously approved outdoor sign applications and beer and liquor licenses for area businesses.
  • Unanimously approved the hire of a new dispatcher for the Vidalia Police Department.