The Slate Quarry Park build is getting closer every day: See the new design!

The Slate Quarry Park build is getting closer every day: See the new design!

The Slate Quarry Park Group reached our fundraising goal earlier this year with a significant matching grant from the Land and Water Conservation Fund. It has been a long haul since a small group of folks in Poultney, Vermont met in early 2016 to plan a pocket park on .18 acres of land between the Poultney-Fair Haven Auto parts store and the Schoolhouse Apartments. It took a almost two years to raise the money to buy the land and then another two years to raise the remaining money.

Master architect, Alan Benoit of Sustainable Design in Manchester, VT got us off with a unique plan that included several gathering circles with connecting pathways between them. At the very beginning we knew we wanted a performance space for small concerts, dance events, poetry readings, craft and all sorts of exhibits. It would be a gathering place for residents of and visitors to the town. Even town meetings could be held in the summer and fall.

In 2018 Landscape architect Brian Post of Standing Stone Landscape Architecture in Springfield, VT brought his skills of designing and building dry stone walls and hardscape to the task of designing the final plans including benches, pathway paver patterns, the tiered performance space in the rear of the park and the monolith enclosure behind the performance space that will include three large slate stones engraved with a brief description of the formation of slate in this region and another brief description of the history of the quarries etched into the two stones. The third stone in the middle will include a poem by Wendell Berry carved into the slate. At the entrance to the park we will place the monolith now installed on the Town Office Green whose inscription was carved by Kerry O. Furlani in 2015. This stone will have pride of place with the sun bringing this lovely stone to life as well as the beautifully carved lettering by Ms Furlani. Kerry Furlani was the founder of the Slate Quarry Park Group and is an internationally recognized stone carver with studios in the Journal Press Building on Main Street.

The support of the slate quarry owners, particularly Shawn Camara, Richard Rupe, Steve Taran and Charlie Brown was instrumental in providing us with financial assistance, in-kind donations of materials and vital industry advice. All these people and the members of the Slate Quarry Park Board of Directors (Barbara Scott, Marcia Angermann, Lawrence Sullivan, Denise Letendre, Krista Rupe and Paul Hancock) are proud to have been a part of this project. Each time we look at the park design we are deeply grateful for all the talented people who have made this possible.