Veterans Freedom Park to be located behind library
By Jane Myhra
The proposed Veterans Freedom Park received approval from the Manawa Common Council.
The Veterans Freedom Park will be located in the city’s beach area, behind the Sturm Memorial Library,
It will recognize all service people.
“We want to also honor current serving and current living veterans,” said Mayor John Smith. “We are all living the life we live not just because of those in the past, but also because of those in the present.”
The project includes handicap accessible fishing piers, new playground equipment and maybe a splash pad.
“It will transform that park into a usable area,” Smith said. “There are a lot of good things that could come out of this.”
Prior to the council meeting on Monday, Aug. 17, Smith had presented the idea to the Improvements and Services Committee. He said many people have been working on this project, including area veterans and their friends and family members.
“We’re fortunate because we have a lot of service people who are skilled workers,” Smith said.
The plan is for the Veterans Freedom Park to be dedicated in about 18 months.
“I want to see this happen,” Smith said.
There will be no cost to the city, except for continuing to maintain the park.
The council also approved new welcome signs for the city of Manawa, as recommended by the Improvements and Services Committee.
“The committee thought it was a good thing for Manawa,” said Committee Chair Mike Frazier.
The four signs will be purchased by the Manawa Area Chamber of Commerce.
The new signs will replace the three signs that were on the north, south and east end of the city.
A large sign will replace the old sign in Triangle Park. It was estimated that the current sign is at least 35 years old.
The council also approved the chamber’s proposal for placement of the large, digital sign in Triangle Park. The proposal includes placing the new sign at the horse statue site and moving the horse statue to the site of the old sign.
“The digital sign needs to be placed so it can be seen from the north and from the south,” Chamber President Tom Squires told the committee.
In other business, the council agreed to post the job opening for a police chief.
The council discussed hiring an adviser to help with the search for a new police chief, which would cost at least $5,000.
“My personal belief is we don’t need to pay somebody,” said Smith. “We have plenty of qualified candidates in the area.”
Until a new police chief is hired, Cpl. Michelle Kamba will be the officer in charge.
The council noted that some railroad tracks have been removed within the city.
According to Smith, a big magnet was used to pick up the tracks. He said the main tracks will probably not be removed until next year.