The Grass Valley Historical Society is moving forward, with the city’s blessing, with a courtyard monument in Memorial Park that will tell the story of how Memorial Park came to be. 2021 marks the 100th anniversary of the park which opened in November of 1921. Commissioner Linda Jack explained the park was initially established to remember the 18 Grass Valley residents that lost their lives in World War I. Memorial Park would fulfill three goals: memorialize the war dead, to provide facilities for recreation and community for local residents, and to attract a new age of automobile tourists. She says the amazing fact is it was a community project and not a city project. The Chamber of Commerce coined the phrase In Memory of The Past We Build for The Future.
The park was developed in 11 months. It featured a number of recreation opportunities including a memorial grove with trees planted for each person lost in the World War 1. The pool was also not as it is today.
There were also playgrounds and ball fields with an auto court set up much like an RV Park with a number of parking spots at one end of the park.
Jack says the new courtyard will incorporate an existing clocktower that was erected in memory of a fallen soldier that succumbed to influenza before he could deploy to Europe. Images and informational placards will also have QR codes that link to other digital based multimedia around the parks history.
Council unanimously supported the project. Council member Jan Arbuckle and Mayor Ben Aguilar commenting on the100 year transformation of the of the park.*
The project approval occurring as the community prepares to celebrate Memorial Day on Monday.