A Capital Region Veterans Memorial park project is continuing to move forward, now with the addition of more land and a meeting place for the committee overseeing the project to meet.
The town voted 4-0 on April 27 to buy 388 Ballston Road from the co-executors for the estate of Arthur H. Mancini for $150,000 using American Rescue Plan Act money. The location would be added to the existing parkland at the corner of Dutch Meadows Lane and Route 50 for a total of 6.5 acres. The property would serve as an entry to the Capital Region Veterans Memorial in the future, said Supervisor Chris Koetzle.
The park would consist of a trail, benches, monuments and a café.
“That was good news to us,” said Larry Zeglen, a member of the seven-person project committee and Vietnam War veteran.
Other members include Marry Brandt, Justine Crowley Duncan, Ginny Barr, Laurie Murphy, Kurt Semon, Gene Loparco and Kurt Bedore.
The quarter of an acre of land currently has a residential property at the location. Koetzle said the house could be used by the committee overseeing the project for meetings. Zeglen said it could also be used to house items like bricks that are being sold for the project.
“The potential is significant,” he said.
Koetzle said the former property owner who had lived at the property died shortly after the town began working on the park and his sons decided to sell the land.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for the town and obviously the veterans to expand upon the legacy park project,” said board member Mike Godlewski. “It’s really going to open up the remainder of that corner.”
Since announcing the project in August 2021 the committee has been seeking grants and developing other ways to fundraise for the estimated $3 million project.
The committee has raised around $200,000 to date for the project, according to Zeglen.
The group has worked with Proctors to put on a show May 28 about Ernie Pyle, an American journalist who wrote stories about World War II soldiers, according to Zeglen. Actor Rick Plummer will play Pyle. Zeglen said Plummer has been putting on the one-man drama for years and is coming from Michigan to do the show locally. Money from the sale of tickets will benefit the project, Zeglen said.
“They’re being really great to us,” Zeglen said about Proctors.
Tickets for the performance are available on Proctors website and people can also purchase tickets for a veteran to attend the show, Zeglen said.
The committee is also seeking artists for an art festival August 27 and 28 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Maalwyck Park. The festival includes a Juried Fine Art Show where entry fees will benefit the park project. For more information visit https://capitalregionveteransmemorial.org/2022/02/17/calling-all-artist-join-us-for-walk-in-the-park-art-festival/
The group is also selling bricks and anyone interested can call committee President Mary Brandt at 518-495-2524.
Contributions may be made by mail to Capital Region Veterans Memorial. Mail checks to to Capital Region Veterans Memorial, Trustco Bank, 286 Saratoga Road, Glenville, NY 12302. Donations can also be made online here.
Reporter Shenandoah Briere can be reached at [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter at SB_DailyGazette.