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Tag Archives: Westport Library Riverwalk
Today’s weather is not exactly the get-outside-and-enjoy type.
But a couple of days ago, it was. Westporters did.
And alert “06880” reader/photographer Fred Cantor was there — at the Riverwalk — to capture them.
The other day, I posted a few of Lynn U. Miller’s photos of the library Riverwalk, at dusk.
I was struck by their beauty. Many “06880” readers were too. But for Suzanne Tanner, one picture was especially poignant. She wrote:
I want to thank Lynn for capturing such a profound and welcoming photo of my daughter’s memorial bench on the grounds of the Westport Public Library.
The bench was inspired by and appropriated with a memorial fund started in my daughter’s name to establish points of figural beauty in and around one of Tess’s favorite places in town — our riverfront library.
I want to remind others how important it is to pause and reflect on all of the love that is given to us in life, be it the warmth of a child’s hand in ours or the generosity of a singular smile resonating in the crevices of time’s travel. It always pleases me to see another appreciate the beauty in the structure of the bench and the delightful setting for all to share.
A portion of Tess’s fund has been allocated to the Levitt Pavilion to continue the effort. I am currently searching for outdoor sculptures, favoring any with the essence of poetry, discovery, mythology and hummingbirds to create a Riverwalk Sculpture Garden in Tess’s honor.
If anyone has any ideas or suggestions, please contact either myself (firstname.lastname@example.org) or the Levitt (email@example.com). I welcome the energy and opportunity to share in the journey of remembering a most delightful spirit with an inspiring path along the riverwalk.
In 1992, a volunteer committee led by the indefatigable Betty Lou Cummings created the Library Riverwalk and Gardens.
A 6-month fundraising campaign drew 5,000 contributors, donating cash as well as services.
Together with a 2nd phase 7 years later, the accomplishments are stunning:
- 11,000 bricks, many of them engraved, in a path 638 feet long
- 57 benches, 3 picnic tables, 23 pole lights and 2 sculptures
- 127 shrubs and bushes, plus 19 trees (and a sprinkler system)
- Stairs from the library to the water, and a boat launch walkway.
After 22 years, the committee has asked the town to take over responsibility for maintanance. They’ve turned over $15,000 in their account to help.
Parks and Rec is happy to accept the responsibility. Over the past several years they’ve taken a more active role in assisting the committee. With the opening of the renovated Levitt Pavilion nearby, the time is ripe for the transfer to happen.
The Riverwalk is one of Westport’s hidden gems.
Okay, it’s not really hidden. Plenty of people enjoy it, at all times of day and throughout the year.
But many others don’t know it exists. And not many know the back story of its creation.
Thanks, Betty Lou and the 5,000 donors who helped make it a reality. More than 2 decades later, your work is greatly appreciated.
And it looks better than ever.