Thursday, 08 February 2018 04:24

Conservancy Conversations With a Park Champion

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On this the month of love and friendship I would like to make a tribute to a special friend. 

Days at the Conservancy can be like in many other jobs, busy.  There are grant deadlines to meet, fund development presentations, events to plan and of course capital and maintenance projects to manage.  There are other days that are quieter and reflective which allow the time and space needed to plan for the future of the park. Both of these benefit from feedback from those who love and use the park.  This is where my friend Bob Eckardt comes in.

Bob had a habit of stopping by the office unannounced for a visit every so often. As the gentleman that he was, he would always ask if he could sit down and talk about the park.  I of course, regardless of any looming deadline, would take the time to speak with Bob. He would share his ideas about how to make Chastain Park a better community but more importantly he was eager to learn about what was going on in the park. Sometimes, I wondered if he was using his talents as a Deacon to make sure I was eloquent in telling the story of the Chastain Park Conservancy. His love of the park was evident.  As a Board Member he participated in every event and then as an Advisory Board Member he was the biggest park champion.

Bob wanted everyone who touched the park to know its history.  He challenged me to find elegant ways to let park users know that the beauty of the park is a reflection of its community.  This is why I believe he wanted to be abreast of what was going on in the park so he could also tell its story to anyone who cared for the park as much as he did.

Bob passed away last May.  Sometimes, when all is quiet at Farm Chastain and all I can hear are the roosters and the goat I miss the knock at the door which would have always certainly been Bob’s. I am not sure if he knew how much I appreciated him.  Therefore, in this the month of love and friendship I would like to pay a tribute to my friend Bob Eckardt:  For your love of sharing ideas, for making time to visit with a friend and for your dedication to that which I care so much about, Chastain Park – thank you Bob your friendship endures!

I am a big believer in sharing wisdom.  From Bob I learned that so much good can come out from genuine conversation; making time to visit with someone you know and asking thoughtful questions can lead to great insights.  Therefore, as you read this blog, I encourage you to think about the park, about the friendships we make in this community and how we can, together, continue to make Chastain Park a place where great memories are made.

Stop by Farm Chastain and visit with us – you know we love to hear from you!

Happy Valentine's to All.
Rosa McHugh
Chastain Park Conservancy 

Executive Director

Last modified on Saturday, 10 February 2018 03:54
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