Memorial Park bench program underway

Brad Works
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AMHERST - Lola Estabrooks likes to walk, but that doesn't mean she does not appreciate a good bench - especially if she thinks it will beautify her town and help others in the process.

So after noticing the large number of seniors that were, like her, taking advantage of the walking track at Amherst Stadium, she decided action was needed.

"It was just a thought I had," Estabrooks said. "It was wonderful to see so many seniors using the track, I thought it would be nice if, when summer came and they moved outdoors, they had a place to sit."

And so Amherst's 'Memorial Park Bench' project was born.

"Now they will have a place to rest," Estabrooks said Sunday, while she, Rodney Long of Campbell's Funeral Home, Keith Tingley of the Amherst Cemetery - where the first bench has been placed - and town councillor George Baker admired the prototype donated by Casey Concrete to help kick-off the project.

"They have them in other cities and towns so why not here," Estabrooks said.

With the idea behind the benches being donated in memory of a loved one, Estabrooks thought Long at the funeral home would be a good contact to get the project going - soon after, Coun. Baker was also contacted.

"The timing couldn't have been better," said Baker. "With the revitalization of Dickie Park underway I thought this was a good fit."

The cemetery agreed to begin project with three benches, and Baker saw an opportunity with the creation of the new walking trail now under construction at Dickie Park.

"I would like to see as many as 15 there," Baker said. "And we would like to get matching picnic tables as well."

After that, Estabrooks and Baker want to see the project expand into the town's other parks, walkways and cemeteries.

Initial cost estimates on the benches are less than $300, and anyone wanting to purchase one in memory of a loved one can contact Campbell's Funeral Home at 667-9906.

Organizations: Memorial Park, Campbell's

Geographic location: Amherst Stadium, Dickie Park

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