We noticed volunteers working on Sunday at the Madison location that will one day be a new veteran's park. The efforts of volunteers will both improve the likelihood of completion and give it a richer heritage.
The site on S. Washington Ave. was generously donated by Jerry and Sue Larson to local veterans service organizations for the purpose of building a park honoring military veterans. The site -- with wooded areas and a creek flowing through -- has the potential of being a beautiful place.
The fund-raising goal for the park has been cut in half since a local committee began seeking support for the memorial last fall, according to committee chair Danny Frisby-Griffin (see Monday's Daily Leader). The original $1 million goal turned out to be too ambitious in the current pandemic climate.
Even so, Frisby-Griffith said volunteer and other in-kind help will make up the difference, and the quality of the park won't be diminished.
The volunteers, who appeared to be mostly or all veterans themselves, will give the park additional meaning. It recalls projects undertaken in this city's history when citizens built things themselves. Projects like the Izaak Walton League clubhouse, the golf course, Flynn Field and many others were built with the sweat of those who wanted a better community. That's different than simply hiring a contractor to build it.
Those who visit and enjoy the S. Washington Ave. veterans park will know that the place will honor veterans for their service to America, but also their contribution to building the beautiful park.
-- Jon M. Hunter