Group fighting illegal dumping in southeast Omaha park

OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) -- A new group called "Friends of Mandan" have spent the last year trying to revitalize the southeast Omaha park after years of trash being illegally dumped there.

"It isn't very pleasant to look at and it isn't a place I would want to bring my children," said Erin Lowis, who has lived next to Mandan Park for 15 years.

She said the appearance of the park makes it feel unsafe.

Jacky Paulson has lived by the park for more than 20 years and has recognized the park was falling into disrepair. She took it upon herself to help save the area.

"About a year ago, we decided that it was time that the people in this neighborhood needed to get together and do something," she said.

The park is full of deep ravines where people have been tossing hundreds of tires, furniture, and other assorted trash.

Paulson said with the help of Keep Omaha Beautiful and other volunteer groups she's seen less dumping and life return to the wooded park.

"You have families who have picnics and barbeques on the weekend, like hundreds of people some times," she said.

Friends of Mandan members have also been speaking with council members in hopes they can install cameras to hold accountable those who choose to keep dumping.