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$2,000 grant awarded for Morgan’s Grove Park path

By Staff | Apr 17, 2009

By James P. Whipple

For the Chronicle

The Jefferson County Commission has approved a $2,000 Community Partnership Grant for Morgan’s Grove Park for the up-keep of the popular walking path there.

The walking path, which was installed nearly a decade ago, is very well-used by residents from across the region.

In the summer of 2000, Maura Bracket, member and one-time president of the Shepherdstown Men’s Club, shared with John Griffith her thoughts about creating a walking/exercise path at the park.

She had applied for a matching grant of $1,600 and asked if Griffith, or someone in the Shepherdstownb Men’s Club – which owns the park land – would be willing to take on the project and oversee it. The matching grant meant that the Men’s Club would have to come up with a matching $1,600 amount. John Griffith told Ms. Bracket that he would be willing to take on the project.

Several estimates were submitted the cost of the project would be between $100,000 and $120,000. “So, that thought was dismissed and we moved on to Plan B,” Griffith said. Bill Hoke suggested the use a gravel grit that could be obtained from the Millville Quarry.

“It was felt the grit should be no less than 3 inches deep, and we decided to make the path 4 feet wide versus the original thought of 6 feet,” Griffith said.

Dave Wright was instrumental in getting the layout of the path started. Work was done by several groups and members of the Men’s Club. Students working for the Park Service and Shepherd University students also helped.

“Mary Stanley provided lunch for us every day we were working on it,” Griffith said.

The Walking path was completed in July 2001.

The path came in under budget and the Men’s Club was able to purchase the grit, the black plastic, and a large supply of Round-Up for keeping the weeds down along the path with the money that was received from the grant. The path, when finished, measured approximately 2/3 of a mile.

In 2004, the Kiwanis Club of Shepherdstown volunteered to resurface the path. In less than a week, approximately 3-4 inches of new grit was used. Some 240 tons were used for the resurface project, the grit provided by the Men’s Club.

“That grit provided a badly needed resurfacing for the path and, as a result, the path is in really good shape at the present time,” Griffith said.