New gathering place under construction in Lawrence Rotary Arboretum

photo by: Dylan Lysen

Volunteers from the Lawrence Home Builders Association work on Monday, Sept. 24, 2018, to construct a new gathering shelter in the Lawrence Rotary Arboretum.

Lawrence residents will soon have a new outdoor gathering place on the southwest side of town.

The three Lawrence Rotary clubs along with the Lawrence Home Builders Association and the city’s Parks and Recreation Department on Monday began building a new gathering shelter in the Lawrence Rotary Arboretum, 5100 W. 27th St.

David Ambler, of the Lawrence Rotary Club, said the new structure would offer an outdoor space for about 75 people to gather in the park. While the Rotary Club has previously placed structures in the park, such as gazebos, none of them allowed for meetings of large groups.

“We’ve worked on different projects ever since we started the park (in 2005),” Ambler said. “This has been one that we’ve really dreamed about for a long, long time.”

The structure, supported by four stone-covered pillars on each side, features a wooden arched roof. When the structure is finished, benches will be added.

Members of the Lawrence Home Builders Association donated labor to build the structure, said Bobbie Flory, executive director of the organization. She said the main construction of the structure would be completed on Monday.

“The only thing that won’t be done is the stonework,” she said.

Although the construction will finish quickly, the use of the structure likely won’t be available until mid to late fall, Ambler said. Use of the structure will need to be registered through the Parks and Recreation Department.

Funds for the projects were provided by several sources, including individual donations from Rotary members and from the Lawrence Parks and Recreation Department’s budget.

Other donations include the lead gift from Jeff and Mary Weinberg and concrete donations from Bill and Marlene Penny.


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