The Baker Lions Club has tasked themselves with giving the Senior Citizen’s Centennial Park a crucial facelift. “The Lions Club was looking for a new service project,” said club secretary Patti Brookes. “We actually acquired this park to work on when Mayor Pratt heard of our search and suggested we give it some much needed maintenance.”
By Angel Wyrwas
Carl Hepperle, long time Lions Club member, is spearheading the project. He has been working on restoring the title sign. “The Parks Department took the sign down,” said Hepperle, “and I’ve been sanding and painting it in their shop.” The park benches are in the process of being sanded and boards replaced. The gazebo is also scheduled to receive a new coat of paint.
“One of the planters has been rebuilt,” said Brookes, “and members have been busy planting flowers to beautify the park.” The Lions Club planted perennials in one of the planters so they would come back year after year. “Mr. Alan Wang donated some of his perennials from his own garden for us to use,” said Brookes, “and let us run a hose from his house while we were planting.” Wang’s residence neighbors the park and his late wife, Mrs. Ruth Wang, was a master gardener remembered fondly by many for her beautiful flowers.
“We’ve had some setbacks,” remarked Brookes. “The weather has not cooperated so it is taking longer to complete than originally anticipated. We just work when we can.” Brookes also mentioned that water is still problematic. The new plants have not had enough rain and too much wind so they may already need replaced. “We have some geraniums and marigolds to plant as well if the weather allows us,” said Brookes. The water was shut off at the park some time ago when a valve was broken. It has been turned on again but currently only two of the eight sprinkler heads are working. “Parks Director Scott Rabbitt is aware of the water issues,” said Brookes.
“There is electricity at the park for people who want to have a picnic or party there,” said Hepperle, “We are also looking into having a light installed in the gazebo.” Approximately ten members have dedicated time to completing this refurbishment and the club will maintain the park in cooperation with the Parks Department going forward.
The Senior Citizen’s Centennial Park is located on First Street West near the post office. The park was dedicated in November 1989 to the senior citizens of Fallon County. The Park Board felt that the Montana Centennial was the appropriate time to recognize the importance of what senior citizens contribute to the development of our community. During the dedication, a time capsule was buried in the park that will be unearthed in 2089 when Montana celebrates its bicentennial.