Friday, March 13, 2009
Save our history! Save our 200+ yr old tree!
This post is dedicated to my lifelong BFF & her park/ tree/ family- fun loving' dad and mom (whom my kiddos lovingly call Yia Yia & Papou) and to the city in which I grew up.
See that gianormously gorgeous tree behind the lovely lady in the hat? Well, that tree is about 200 yrs old. As Papou says in his op-ed to the local paper: "On Feb. 11, the Canton park commissioners gave approval to destroy one of Canton’s city parks, which includes five magnificent oak trees. Four of the oaks measure 11 ft in circumference and are estimated to be 125 yrs old. The fifth oak measures 16 ft 2 inches in circumference and has been estimated to be between 200 - 220 yrs old, making it one of the oldest oak trees in Ohio. A 200 yr old oak means that the tree was in its young life when Thomas Jefferson was president. And if a few years older, it was growing when our Constitution was signed."
That gianormous beauty, and the 4 other mentioned lovelies, are located in a nice family friendly park that offers "free" fun for families in the form of a basketball court, an ample field area to run and play ball, and the dazzling bounty of such old and sublime and stately trees. This park is directly next to an architecturally old yet sound and beautiful brick firehouse (in the hot days of summer, the firefighters frequently chat to fascinated kids that naturally gather in amazment of the awesomely cool firehouse), the park borders on a large retirement home, and also happens to be smack dab in the middle of a quiet middle-class neighborhood.
The problem? The former Mayor (Janet Weir-Creighton (R-lapdog) whom is locally famous for getting a Bush "position" after her mayoral defeat in '08, getting a personal phone call from Karl "I should be a convict for all the crimes" Rove , the rotting whiff of GOP corruption *gasp!* and for posing for a newspaper pix while puckering up & kissing a Bush bobblehead... I knows... I knows... position, pucker, kiss, & Bush bobblehead connote ALL kinds of horrific images... must not vomit... must not vomit) arranged to have these trees axed down before her defeat so a spanking new firehouse and firefighter training facility could be put up.
Now don't get me wrong. I love lives to be saved and cherish fire safety as much as the next Smokey the Bear, but in this ravaged county, which can proudly boast of a massive 10.4% unemployment rate, finding any free, family friendly and lovely spots of brightness and beauty are far and few between, while finding large rundown areas and bazillions of foreclosed/ abandoned homes that could be used for a new firehouse and/or fire training center, are literally everywhere. Not to mention-- can I tell ya again-- that one of these freakin' trees is 200+ yrs old?? That the other 4 are at least 125 yrs old?? Historical preservation anyone??
One would think that when your citizens are and have been economically suffering as much as Cantonians are, that the old mayor (along with her mythical conservative GOP family values) would have wanted to save as much money as possible, foster "free" family entertainment, and preserve as much precious heritage one could. But in Canton, where Repuke rule had an ironfist stranglehold for a looooong time, such virtues are chucked, especially given that the money set aside for this wreckage of natural beauty and old architecture, can only be used for this particular wreckage of natural beauty and old architecture, and nothing else.
Sigh... I fear for these majestic beauties, and for the families who enjoy the park, but maybe the new Mayor, William J. Healy II (D-economically downtrodden), can be convinced to save the gorgeous trees, the family friendly park, and the lovely old brick firehouse? Maybe...
Mayor William J Healy II
P.O. Box 24218
Canton, OH 44701
CANTON CITY COUNCIL
218 Cleveland Ave SW
Canton, OH 44702