A Park Bench For All Generations

Since the Park Bench Dedication Program began in 2015, more than 75 benches have been dedicated to honor a special occasion, or in memory of a loved one. In addition to raising more than $250,000 in support of your Charleston parks, these dedications weave the stories and memories of park users into these beautiful spaces. This month we want to share the dedication story from Ellie Gray, and her journey to create a park bench, “For All Generations.”

__From Ellie Gray__

In 2009, my husband, Geoff, and I moved to downtown Charleston just south of Colonial Lake. We usually visited the park a few times a month before having kids; but after kids, we were there with increased frequency. Our girls played on the swing sets and slides in the old playground, climbed the beautiful oak trees, caught fish in Colonial Lake, and learned to bicycle there. When we first heard about the bench program, we wanted to be a part of it. We were able to choose a bench that was on the south side of the park that shared the same cherished view of the lake as we had when walking up from our home. When our kids were finally old enough to bike or scooter around the lake, we always used our bench as a landmark for them to meet us.

Something we never thought about when we dedicated the bench was how many people would pay attention to what our dedication plaque says “A Neighborhood Park for All Generations.” We have received numerous pictures and texts from friends who happen upon our bench which always makes us smile. Please take time to enjoy all Colonial Lake and the newly renovated Moultrie Park has to offer and help support the Bench Dedication Program and Charleston Parks.

All proceeds from this program support the Conservancy’s work in 20 Charleston parks. If you would like to learn more about the Park Bench Dedication program, please visit [__https://www.charlestonparksconservancy.org/parkbench__](https://www.charlestonparksconservancy.org/parkbench)

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