By KIM LEATHERMAN
LAKE PLACID — Wednesday morning’s weather was custom ordered by the Town Council for the official ribbon cutting at the new and very much upgraded Lake June pavilions. The park is located on the beach side of the Lake June Ball Field Sports Complex.
Phase I of the project was to raze the decrepit pavilion and often-vandalized bathrooms. Montz Construction created two restrooms and storage rooms that are compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
A major pavilion and a smaller pavilion, both with LED lighting, are accessed by concrete pathways. Mayor John Holbrook said there will be picnic tables soon. The old tables are available but Holbroook said Recreation Supervisor Harry Durbano has approached the construction teacher at Lake Placid High School to craft the tables for the town. The town would furnish the raw materials and the students would supply the talent and labor.
The canopies of large oak trees provide a shaded lawn for children to play in or curling up with a good book. The old oak trees came into play with the layout design of the new pavilions. No one on council or town staff wanted to see the trees cut down in order to make room for the new pavilions. Polston Engineering worked with the town and had to shift the blueprints around a bit in order to accommodate the massive trees.
“That tree must be 150 years old,” Holbrook said.
The addition of two concrete handicap parking spots with a wide and even sidewalk to the pavilions and restrooms will benefit people with disabilities who also want to enjoy the park. Phase II and III will add additional paved and lined parking in lieu of the current shell rock surface.
“This turned out even better than I thought it would,” Horticulture Supervisor Danny Lamarre said. “This is amazing. This pavilion isn’t going anywhere. I am so glad we were able to save the trees too.”
Lamarre said the pavilion was constructed with special beams that would not twist or bend.
The town received $277,000 in grants from Recreation and Parks Advisory Committee toward Phase I of the project. The town paid $7,000 for a new boat dock.
In order to deter vandals, security cameras will be placed in and around the buildings, according to Town Administrator Phil Williams. There are already cameras within the park for security but more will be added.
Councilwoman Debra Worley said she was very pleased with Phase I of the park’s improvements.
“I feel proud,” she said. “We worked really hard on this.”
Worley pointed out the textured concrete treatment in front of the bathrooms for safety.
The pavilions can be reserved for parties by calling Town Hall at 863-699-3747.