The Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB) and Park Board Commissioner Liz Wielinski will hold a groundbreaking ceremony for the Sheridan Memorial Park and Veterans Memorial on Thursday May 23, 2013. The public is invited to attend. The ceremony will take place at 10 a.m. Sheridan Memorial Park, 1300 Water St. NE, Minneapolis. See official invitation
Citizens of northeast Minneapolis, along with veterans from multiple wars, have worked tirelessly to make this memorial along the Mississippi River a reality. “The Veteran’s Memorial is a thank you to those who stepped forward to serve, a tribute to those whose lives were lost or forever altered, and a living reminder of our hope for a world with lasting peace.” said State Representative, Diane Loeffler. Representative Loeffler was responsible for shepherding the project through the legislature for the state funding that was needed to plan and construct the project
Commissioner Wielinski added, “We especially want to thank the following individuals and groups for their support of this project: The State of Minnesota, the Puzak Family (who donated some of the land for the park), Jenny Fortman and the Sheridan Neighborhood Organization, and all of the many veterans who helped create the vision for this space, most especially veterans Ed Karbo who led the initial charge, and Howard Weller who followed it through to the final stages.”
Back in 1995, a group of veterans led by Karbo began looking for a site to commemorate war veterans. They joined forces with the Sheridan Neighborhood Organization (SNO) in 2005 to site the memorial in what was formerly Water Street Park—now renamed Sheridan Memorial Park. SNO and the veterans have raised thousands of dollars in contributions.
The veteran’s memorial will be located at the south end of the Sheridan Memorial Park, with an overlook at the edge of the Mississippi River. It will honor all military veterans from the ten conflicts in which Minnesotans have served. Plans call for a central sculpture on a circular plaza surrounded by five concentric rings made up of lawn, a perimeter walk, benches and markers, and peace gardens. Closely planted trees will comprise the outermost ring. Ten of the markers will each bear a description of one of the ten conflicts. An eleventh “empty” marker will represent the ever potential threat of war, reminding us to strive for peace. The sculpture and eleven markers are being created by local artist Robert Smart. The perimeter walk will be punctuated with pavers engraved with quotes about peace.
Construction of the memorial park will take place during the summer and fall with a grand opening date slated for Veteran’s Day November 11, 2013.
The program for the groundbreaking ceremony will feature the presenting and retrieving of flags by Fridley Shaddrick and Labeau American Legion Post 303, comments by neighborhood representatives and elected officials, groundbreaking, and the presentation of a memorial wreath to recognize all veterans as a prelude to the Memorial Day weekend.
All are welcome to join in the celebration.
When: Thursday, May 23 10:00 am
Where: Sheridan Memorial Park, 1300 Water St. NE, Minneapolis
To receive project updates and meeting notices via email, go to www.minneapolisparks.org and click on the red envelope. For additional information on the project, visit the Sheridan Memorial Park project page on the MPRB website.