Charlie, a red-beaked duck with black and white feathers, is now swimming in the waters near the old Lindale Mill once again, know as Mill Pond to locals.
And he has friends. A few mallards, a wood duck and a few ducks resembling that famous fowl in commercials for a national insurance company have come to play.
Tim Reynolds, a fifth-generation employee of the mill that closed in 2001, remembers seeing Charlie before the mill closed and before the creek became a dumping ground for garbage and even a recliner and mattress.
The recent cleanup efforts by Restore Lindale have drawn Charlie and his fowl friends back to the waters near the mill.
Children can now been seen feeding ducks again.
“It used to be a “sin” for you not to stop and let the ducks cross the road,” Reynolds recalls.
Reynolds and his group cleaned debris and some of the aforementioned furniture out of the creek that runs past the old manufacturing plant, under the bridge and to an old gristmill located near First Baptist Church of Lindale.
The ducks came back. And so did a few geese.
They were probably lounging around a nearby lake, Reynolds said.
Sixty-seven people helped clean up Mill Pond and the area surrounding it on Feb. 9.
This Saturday, another cleanup is planned from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. with a rain date for the following weekend in order to continue making the creek more habitable for the fowl and a fun place for families to come to feed them.
Volunteers are asked to wear gloves and bring clippers, pruners, rakes and other tools they may have. Parking is available in the lot across the street from the mill office.
For more information, see the Lindale Mill Facebook page.