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Brundidge must donate new park area

An update on the armory park recreation site and the city’s award from the Liberty Tree Society were the orders of business for the Brundidge City Council Tuesday afternoon.

City Manager Britt Thomas said that the two-acre armory park property has been appraised at $33,000 and that the city is required to dedicate property of equal value back to recreation. The property may be purchased or may be property that is city owned.

In 1977, the city built a park (tennis courts) on Dickert hill with Land and Water Conservation funds.

“Over the years, the demographics changed and the park was no longer used and was sold along with other city-owned property on the hill in 1999,” Thomas said. “Back in the spring of this year, the state began to inventory the parks that had been built with Land and Water Conservation funds. Since our park had been taken out of service, the city had to remediate the situation. The park can be in a different place but is has to be dedicated back to recreation.”

Possible city-owned property locations for the recreation park will be reviewed at the next council meeting.

Thomas said the city has received a donation of $2,500 from the Liberty Tree Society for Brundidge’s Liberty Tree Memorial. The society’s goal is to tell the story of the Liberty Tree through memorials in towns all across America.

The donation covers the cost of Brundidge’s Liberty Tree Memorial that includes a 10-foot American Liberty Elm tree, a commemorative bronze tablet, a framed print of an American Elm etching with Thomas Paine’s poem, “Liberty Tree.”

The city will also receive certificate of membership in the Liberty Tree Society and proclamation by the governor of Massachusetts establishing August 14 as Liberty Tree Day.

“The donation check will cover the cost of the package,” Thomas said. “This is a very nice gesture. In return, we will be asked to plant the elm tree in a prominent place and hold a public dedication ceremony during Arbor Week in February.”

Thomas also brought the council up to date on Pike County Habitat for Humanity’s efforts to resolve issues regarding property donated to the organization. The organization now has a clear title to the 100×100-foot property on the corner of John Street and Hardshell Road but now must request the rezoning of the property.