CARRBORO, N.C. (WNCN) – The Town of Carrboro on Monday opened a park honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. It had broken ground on it exactly a year prior.
Carrboro bought the property that now houses the park back in 1999, but multiple redesigns and funding issues kept construction from starting until 2019.
It’s a dream 20 years in the making for those who live around the park.
“It means a lot when communities come together and decide to honor a true hero for America,” said Anna Richards, President of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro NAACP.
“We wanted it to really reflect so much of what Dr. King stood for,” added Carrboro Mayor Lydia Lavelle.
After years of fundraising, planning, and construction, Carrboro christened Martin Luther King Jr. Park as a place for young and old, no matter who they are.
“Carrboro strives to be as welcoming and inclusive and providing a sense of fairness and equity. That dream is very fitting,” said Carrboro Parks and Recreation Director Anita Jones-McNair.
While kids enjoy the bike paths they’re greeted by drawings of Dr. King commissioned by local high school students, and inspirational quotes line the walking areas.
“Some of his words and messages that he had continue to inspire people who come here to the park,” said Richards.
“It’s meant to be a place where you can come and contemplate and just enjoy the outdoors in the little town of Carrboro,” said Lavelle.
Now the hope is that even though the park is finished, it will serve as a reminder that we are all still under construction.
“I hope that it just serves as a reminder of what he stood for, and maybe it will spark interest and somebody will explore what he was in totality and become inspired as a leader for social justice for all,” said Richards.
“We are really trying to make Carrboro a place that you can feel safe, comfortable, and feel good about living here and participating in what we’ve got going on,” said Jones-McNair.
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