Basking in the shade of a majestic new 30-foot by 44-foot wooden-arched, open-air pavilion, dozens of locals kicked off the summer season by enjoying the multitude of beautiful new renovations at their favorite summer spot.
The Party in the Park began at 5 p.m. yesterday, with a ribbon cutting ceremony celebrating the new features at 6:30 p.m. Fanwood Mayor Mahr, Union County Freeholder Chairman Al Mirabella and other local officials were on hand to celebrate the new face of LaGrande Park.
As locals explored brand new foursquare and basketball courts, little ones rode a mechanical ball, climbed a rock wall, adorned fake tattoos, and enjoyed exhibits from the Trailside Nature Center and the local Butterfly Garden.
The new park also has brand new benches, seating for picnics under the pavilion, an ice skating rink, and freshly planted trees lining the path to the rink. After the loss of several large trees over the years, the area near the recreation building was also resurfaced.
The cost of sprucing up LaGrande did not fall on the tax payers. All of the park's improvements were paid for by grants and from revenues brought in by different activities run by the Fanwood Recreation Department, including the annual Fanwood 5K and Family Fun Run.
The Party in the Park also marked the beginning of the Recreation Department’s long list of summer programs. These include summer movies at LaGrande Park, classes for little ones who want to “toss those training wheels,” the Fanwood Olympics, and more.
The Fanwood Memorial Library also offers a variety of summer programs for readers of every age. To learn more, to the library, and the many events scheduled this summer.