For his senior project, Barrett Price had a big dream. He hoped to combine his love of landscaping with a community service project. The residents at AHC McNairy nursing home in Selmer would reap the benefits of his labors.
Barrett first thought he would find a mentor at one of the large landscaping businesses out of Jackson. After talking with his friend Sarah Pattyson, he learned her father Shane Pattyson used to have a landscaping business. Barrett felt having a mentor closer to home made more sense, since he would be more available for help.
The two began their collaboration by looking for the perfect spot to create an outdoor oasis. Barrett quickly decided on the nursing home, as they had a large open space behind the building that seemed to be in need of just what he had in mind.
“I just think they’d be able to go outside and get some fresh air. I know some residents like to go out on the front porch and there’s not really much space out there for them to just all go out and hang.“
For the project, Barrett designed a 150’ walkway with a 20 x 20 patio built from paver stones. The patio will have a 12 x 12 pergola and 2 benches. There will also be an above-ground water feature, hopefully with fish included later. He was able to design the project himself, something he enjoyed.
“My favorite part of the project has been starting from scratch, being able to come up with my own design, and just be creative with it.” The most frustrating thing for Barrett has been the weather. “Well, perhaps the weather, and what’s going on now,” he said.
The school closure on March 19th saw an abrupt halt to the project, as Barrett could no longer visit the nursing home. He worked on a couple of basic lawncare jobs before the official quarantine started, and since then has just tried to stay busy. at home.
Barrett estimates he has already spent some 35-40 hours on the project, but there is still much to be done. As soon as the green light is given, he plans to return to the nursing home and complete his vision, even if it’s after graduation. All told, he estimates the project will cost between $3-4,000, something he could not have accomplished without some generous sponsors.
After graduation, Barrett plans to attend Freed Hardeman University to earn a degree in Business Management. He plans to combine that degree with his love of the outdoors and someday run his own landscaping business.
For incoming students who need to think about their own senior projects, Barrett had this advice: “Make sure it’s something you would be able to handle overall, because you don’t want to choose something too big, but you don’t want to choose something super small and be done with it. Make sure you can supply it.”
Barrett is a trumpet player in the band, having been in the band since 7th grade. He is the son of Tim and Stephanie Price.
Barrett has received donations for the project from the following businesses and/or individuals: Mama Fia’s, Shelter Insurance-David Goodman, Modern Woodman, Lowes South Jackson, Lowes Milan, JR Steakhouse, Campbell Associates, The Loft on Court, The Huggins Family, Wade and Melba Huggins and Dr. Perkins.