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Club considers ‘Friends’ group

By Staff | Dec 16, 2011

The Shepherdstown Community Club (SCC) is considering establishing a “Friends of Morgan’s Grove Park” organization to better address its preservation, operations and enhancements in response to developments in the historic area southwest of town.

The initial exploratory meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 9 in the War Memorial Building.

“The idea was considered by the club several years ago, but not followed up. Recent events in the struggle to prevent inappropriate rezoning of adjacent property made it clear that now the time had come to act. Local resident Neal Martineau’s was right on the mark when he made the point during the county commission’s public hearing that we need to stop reacting and become proactive in working constructively with all participants to determine how we develop the areas around Shepherdstown,” said President Mike Austin in a statement.

He continued, “The club was delighted with the cooperation and initiative taken by area residents, HMOs, the business community, non profit organizations, local government officials and concerned citizens in addressing the zoning issue. We would be foolish not to build on that new-found confidence that people can make a difference and that their ideas and desires will be fully considered. A healthy Friends of Morgan’s Grove Park organization would help us to make fuller use of the recreational opportunities that the park provides and to restore the balance with club activities downtown at the War Memorial Building. It would also help in raising funds for better maintenance, capital improvements and in dealing with emergent issues. More importantly it would help us nurture that sense of ownership that is so critical in protecting such valuable real estate. In the past weeks we found how many people love that park and are willing to contribute when needed.”

Austin emphasized that the FOMGP, as conceived, would not have an agenda other than the well being of the park and its relationship to the surrounding areas within the Urban Growth Boundary of Greater Shepherdstown.

The SCC board will work with the ideas that emerge from the Jan. 9 meeting to finalize an appropriate plan of action.