The Burnside Lake Water Park is owned by The Neshoba County Board of Supervisors and managed by The Philadelphia-Neshoba County Park Commission. The Park was purchased from the Pearl River Basin Development District in January of 2018 before the district was later dissolved by action of the Mississippi Legislature.
Creation of the District
The Pearl River Basin Development District was created by the Mississippi Legislature in 1964 as a special fund agency to assume the legal responsibilities involved in coordinating local, state and federal programs for water resource development.
The enabling legislation was designed to permit those counties within the Pearl River Basin to join together for the purpose of planning and constructing projects for recreational uses, flood control, pollution abatement and soil conservation.
Characteristics of the District
Eligible counties were allowed to join on an individual basis by county-wide referendum. Member counties include: Hancock, Hinds, Leake, Lincoln, Marion, Neshoba, Pearl River, Pike, Scott, Simpson and Walthall.
The District had a 31 member Board of Directors. Two Directors were appointed by each County Board of Supervisors for 6 year terms. One Director was appointed from each of the following state agencies: State Board of Health, Forestry Commission, Department of Wildlife, Fisheries and Parks, and the Department of Environmental Quality. One Director was appointed by the Governor.
The Pearl River Basin Development District was dissolved by the Mississippi Legislature on July 1, 2018.
Pearl River Boatway Parks
Burnside Lake Water Park consists of 115 acres in Neshoba County approximately 5 miles northeast of Philadelphia on Highway 15. The park is located on Burnside Lake, an oxbow lake of the Pearl River. The park facilities include: The Park Auditorium that can accommodate meetings of up to 180 people in heated and air conditioned comfort (currently closed for renovation), a boat ramp, oxbow lake, fishing pier, 3 open-air pavilions, 3 lighted ball fields, picnicking areas, playgrounds, nature trail, and suspension bridge. Burnside Lake Water Park is operated and maintained by the Philadelphia Neshoba County Park Commission.