District Digest News Stories

Sweet partnership with McDonalds treats kids who play it safe

Nashville District Public Affairs
Published July 14, 2015
Park Ranger Phillip Sliger poses with a group of kids wearing their life jackets at Defeated Creek Park Day Use Area at Cordell Hull Lake July 9, 2015.  They all received vouchers good for a free ice cream treat or smoothie courtesy of the McDonalds in Gordonsville, Tenn.

Park Ranger Phillip Sliger poses with a group of kids wearing their life jackets at Defeated Creek Park Day Use Area at Cordell Hull Lake July 9, 2015. They all received vouchers good for a free ice cream treat or smoothie courtesy of the McDonalds in Gordonsville, Tenn.

Park Ranger Phillip Sliger rewards Jordan Johnson with a voucher for a McDonalds treat July 9, 2015 for wearing her helmet while riding her bike at Defeated Creek Campground in Defeated, Tenn., on the shore of Cordell Hull Lake. Jordan was camping with her mother Melissa Johnson.

Park Ranger Phillip Sliger rewards Jordan Johnson with a voucher for a McDonalds treat July 9, 2015 for wearing her helmet while riding her bike at Defeated Creek Campground in Defeated, Tenn., on the shore of Cordell Hull Lake. Jordan was camping with her mother Melissa Johnson.

Park Ranger Phillip Sliger gives a voucher for a free ice cream from McDonalds to Eero Kent, who wore a life jacket while swimming at Cordell Hull Lake July 9, 2015 with his father Greg and mother Crystal. The sweet treat was courtesy of the McDonalds in Gordonsville, Tenn.

Park Ranger Phillip Sliger gives a voucher for a free ice cream from McDonalds to Eero Kent, who wore a life jacket while swimming at Cordell Hull Lake July 9, 2015 with his father Greg and mother Crystal. The sweet treat was courtesy of the McDonalds in Gordonsville, Tenn.

Park Ranger Phillip Sliger (Right) receives vouchers for free ice cream and smoothies July 9, 2015 from Vince Blackledge, general manager of the McDonalds in Gordonsville, Tenn. The owners, Tim and Sandra Funderburk, donated the vouchers to promote positive family recreation and reward kids who practice good safety.

Park Ranger Phillip Sliger (Right) receives vouchers for free ice cream and smoothies July 9, 2015 from Vince Blackledge, general manager of the McDonalds in Gordonsville, Tenn. The owners, Tim and Sandra Funderburk, donated the vouchers to promote positive family recreation and reward kids who practice good safety.

DEFEATED, Tenn. (July 14, 2015) – When park rangers witness young people practicing good safety at Cordell Hull Lake this summer, they might just reward them for their efforts thanks to a sweet partnership with McDonalds.

Tim and Sandra Funderburk, owners of the McDonalds in Gordonsville, Tenn., recently donated a batch of vouchers good for free ice cream treats and smoothies that the Corps of Engineers will hand out to recognize deserving youngsters who play it safe.

“We are very excited to be partnering with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in order to promote positive family recreation.  We too enjoy our area lakes and we encourage everyone to do the same in a safe and responsible manner,” said the Funderburks.

Park Ranger Phillip Sliger met July 9 with Vince Blackledge, general manager of the Gordonsville McDonalds, to officially receive the vouchers.

“The rangers will be looking at what they (the kids) are doing and trying to catch them doing things right, and reward them for doing whatever it is they did right,” Blackledge said.

Blackledge said being a part of the community is a big thing for McDonalds.  If partnering with the Corps and providing treats help keep kids safe, then that is a sweet outcome that makes it all worthwhile, he added.

With the vouchers in hand, Sliger headed out to Defeated Creek Day Use Area and Campground where he rewarded the first batch of safety good doers.

He first recognized Eero Kent from Riddleton, Tenn., a young boy who wore a life jacket while swimming at the lake with his father Greg and mother Crystal.

Sliger then spotted Jordan Johnson riding her bike in the campground and he stopped to thank her for being a good example.

“She was with several of her friends riding around the campground, but she alone had her helmet on,” Sliger said.  “So she received a McDonald’s voucher.”

The park ranger then found another group of kids swimming, all wearing their life jackets.  He explained to them the importance of water safety, and they all received their sweet rewards.

“The park rangers at Cordell Hull Lake plan to keep an eye out for young people throughout the summer,” said Park Ranger Jamie Summers. “The kids might just get recognized for being safe.”

Summers said the Corps is especially grateful for the partnership with McDonalds and for their role in promoting safety on the water and in the campgrounds and recreation areas.

The Funderburks own multiple McDonalds, including the one in Carthage, Tenn., which is located close to Cordell Hull Lake. The vouchers are honored at the stores which are listed on them.

(The public can obtain news, updates and information from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District on the district’s website at www.lrn.usace.army.mil, on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/nashvillecorps and on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/nashvillecorps. The public can also follow Cordell Hull Lake on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/cordellhulllake.)