By Ellen Braun
Claudius Crozet Park has a long history dating back to 1957 when the 22-acre parcel was first donated to establish a community park. Since then, many Crozetians have served on the Park’s board of directors, volunteered in some capacity, attended an event, or swam in the pool when it was located on the opposite side of the parking area. For many Crozet residents, the park is a backdrop to memories like learning to swim, seeing fireworks arch across the sky on a July night, watching a favorite grandkid catch a fly ball on the run or using the ‘swarm of bees’ strategy in a kids’ soccer game. Crozet Park has played an integral role in our community, so it’s no wonder that, as we talk about development of a downtown mall, residents almost unanimously say new development requires a connecting pathway to the park.
The Park is in its 58th year of operation. Recognizing how the park has figured in our lives, the park’s board is determined to gather up and share some of those memories from the community. The board is embarking on a history project with the goal of gathering old materials related to the park. A team of 10-12 adult and high school/college volunteers will work in space provided by Crozet Library to scan old photos, record stories and take in materials that shed light on the role of Crozet Park in our town. The team will use the same process to collect old board documents and sort them out, digitizing some and keeping others in physical form, helping current and former board members finally free up basement space.
Here’s how you can help. If you have old documents or photos that you wish to share and that are relevant to the park’s history, bring them to the work session on Saturday, August 15, at the Crozet Library from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The team expects to see old park board rosters, brochures from Arts and Craft Fairs, old pool rules and, of course, photos that tell the park’s story. The team is also looking for a lunch sponsor, so offers are welcome.
The project’s discoveries will be displayed at Crozet Library in the fall.