Stanley Park celebrates milestone with new board members
By Katelyn Gendron
Reminder Assistant Editor
WESTFIELD The New Year ushers in a milestone for Stanley Park, marking the park's 60th anniversary as well as three new members of the park's Board of Directors to aid in the celebration.
Last month, Stanley Park Board of Directors President Jeffrey Glaze announced that W. Rockne "Rock" Palmer of Westfield, Robert Watkins of Southwick and Paul Marchese of Longmeadow were appointed to the board due to their dedication to the continued preservation of the city's historical and recreational landmark.
"I find it a great opportunity to use my skills [as a lawyer and Westfield resident] for the good of Stanley Park," Palmer said in an interview with Reminder Publications. "I'm excited to do it."
He explained that living across the street from the park provides him and his wife with the opportunity to take advantage of the landscape daily by walking the trails or snowshoeing in the winter.
Palmer said he will focus his energies on various legal issues concerning Stanley Park. He added that he has also been asked to assist in the development of long-term giving and estate planning.
"It's a great honor [to be appointed to the board]," Watkins said. "I want to help [the board members] continue their wonderful journey [as the caretakers of the park]."
He noted that his experience as a former member of the Southwick Conservation Commission and the Friends of Grandmothers' Garden will aid him during his time on the board.
"I think [the park] is a great resource for the community and through the generosity of Frank Stanley Beveridge [the founder of the park] it's a jewel we can all enjoy," Marchese said. "My goal is to maintain the park in a manner that was originally hoped for by Mr. Beveridge.he purchased the properties [the initial 25 acres] so that future generations could enjoy it."
He added that he is honored to be a part of a group of "great people dedicated to the park and the community."
Glaze noted that the board will be focusing their efforts on many endeavors throughout the year, including the "60 Days of Celebration" from June 15 to Aug. 15, marking the park's 60th anniversary celebration. Events throughout the 60 days will include the dedication of the redesigned Asian Garden, a benefit walk-a-thon, a black tie musical presentation and a family-oriented parade and picnic.