WESTFIELD – Stanley Park and its Board of Directors are playing host to its first Saturday in the Park Garden Party to help cap off fundraising for the park’s new pavilion, according to Director Bob McKean.
The Garden Party on Aug. 22 will include local beer and wine tastings, samples from area restaurants, a silent auction, raffle and entertainment by The Argiro Quintet and Andrea Niki.
“It’s really an event where we can show off the park. It’s a good time for the park,” McKean said. “It’s only from 3 to 6 p.m., so we’re not taking someone’s whole night. They can have some other fun too, and it’s better to see the park in the day time.”
The new pavilion will be in place by the end of September, McKean said, and with the money raised, patrons will be able to get the facility he said they deserve. This includes a kitchen, fewer obstructed views and more grass seating.
Above all, the new pavillion will provide a structurally sound facility, McKean said.
“There’s going to be a better atmosphere,” he said. “It’s going to be safe. The reason the other building came down was because it wasn’t safe … Safety of our patrons is No. 1.”
While the original pavilion fundraising campaign had its sights set on a $4 million structure, McKean said, “We pulled a Kenny Rogers and knew when to hold them and fold them.” The design is more modest, but nonetheless, will make a great addition to the park, he said.
McKean said his hope is that the new facility will bring activities back to Stanley Park, like weddings receptions and city events.
“I’m very proud to be a small part of this, and I think everyone will be happy once it’s built,” McKean said. “We’ll have many functions, even more functions … It’ll be much more modern in today’s world. It’ll be nice.”
Ultimately, the Garden Party and the new pavilion allow for the Stanley Park staff and the greater Westfield community to give back and honor the man who established the park: Frank Stanley Beveridge.
“We’d like to have as many people as possible. Please come in and enjoy yourself. Help us pay Mr. Beveridge’s legacy forward … The only way we can help thank him and everyone else who has helped us and making sure we pay it forward so others can enjoy it.”
For tickets for the Garden Party, please visit www.stanleypark.org or call 568-9312 ext. 112. Those interested in attending must RSVP by Aug. 7.