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Hastings looks to spruce up Highland Park
What's old is new again. The highland park arboretum committee is giving Hastings first cemetery a makeover. Old, worn down graves scatter the grounds of this cemetery.
Some, almost as old as the town itself.
"The gravestones actually enhance the park, I think," said Ron Seymour, Highland Park Arboretum Committee.
It's the resting place of siblings killed by diphtheria. A war soldier. And those that were a part of Hastings from the start.
"It's a true piece of history," said Bob Foote Sr., Fund-raising Committee Chair, HPAC.
The highland park arboretum committee says it's underutilized.
"We couldn't think of a better place to provide a beautiful welcome to visitors that come to Hastings and people that live in Hastings," said Seymour.
240 trees of over 200 different varieties have already taken root.
The next step?
Building a pavilion in the midst of it all.
"It's just a beautiful location. It's going to be immersed within all of our trees and gardens that we've planted. To me, it's an outdoor classroom," said Seymour.
But, this requires money.
$85,000, in fact. They're asking community members to pitch in.
"This community is so terrific in backing up projects, it's amazing, we feel that within 30 to 60 days we will have most of the funds," said Foote Sr.
But, construction won't start until the spring. When all these trees have fresh leaves.
"People can come and enjoy the park, learn about the park, be immersed in the park," said Seymour.
A faint white line marks the future walkway.
A path to view the newly planted trees and the old, faded head stones.
"Our idea is to have a quiet, contemplative location," said Seymour.
If you're interested in donating you can write a check to the Hastings Community Foundation. Designate Highland Park Arboretum Pavilion Fund and return it to the foundation.
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