A planned lighting feature for the Winamac Town Park’s swinging bridge continues to be discussed by the town’s park board. As of today, project organizers and town officials have exactly four-and-a-half years to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars and install the feature in time for the Memorial Bridge’s centennial.
Greg Henry, who’s been spearheading the effort, told the park board Thursday he’s contacted several companies, and Associated Controls + Design of Indianapolis has come up with an initial proposal. “The bridge would be amazing from all directions,” Henry said. “Multi-color, we can change it through the year. Say at Christmastime, you want to put red and green on it; red, green, white. Halloween, you can do green and orange or whatever you want to do.”
Henry said there are a lot possibilities, but installing decorative lights on the towers and the bottom of the bridge would cost roughly $375,000. He and the board members were confident that money could be raised mainly through grants and private donations. “I don’t want the community to feel like it’s coming out of the taxpayers or none of that,” Henry said. “This whole project, to me, is going to be people that care about that bridge, and I can’t think of a single soul that doesn’t care about that bridge. It’s part of our past, it’s our present, and our future. That’s what the bridge is all about.”
Board member Pat Bawcum voiced her support for moving ahead. “I think if it’s a fundraiser and there’s a group that wants to fundraise for it and they’ve got four years to do it, I think it’s a great idea,” she told Henry. “I think our job is to clean the thing up and get it repainted and make sure it’s structurally sound. So I think that’s our job, and if your committee wants to do it, hey, I don’t see anything wrong with it.”
Board President Courtney Poor added that the park board’s official involvement could open the door to additional grant opportunities.
As a next step, the Winamac Park Board plans to hear a presentation from Associated Controls + Design, during its March 7 meeting.