Ribbon cutting held at artPARK

| October 19, 2017

Pictured from left are Mayor Steve Mercer, Anne Cornell, Carolyn Simpson, Robert Simpson, and Chuck Hathaway at the ribbon cutting for the artPARK on Thursday, Oct. 19. Beth Scott | Beacon

COSHOCTON – Twelve years ago, downtown Coshocton experienced a tragic loss when the Park Hotel burned to the ground. That lot then became a sand-filled space that was blocked off to any trespassers by the city of Coshocton. Today, that space is a far cry from an empty eyesore that it used to be.

On Oct. 19 at 11 a.m., with the help of many businesses and individuals, the artPARK officially opened with a ribbon cutting ceremony.

“Anne (Cornell) took initiative to say, let’s do something special with this area,” said Mayor Steve Mercer. “It can become a missing tooth or a little showpiece. To have a park like this is a real visionary effort on the part of Anne and the park board. I’m very grateful to have people like Anne in the community to have a vision that is totally different than a regular park. I believe this will be a real asset to our community.”

The artPARK was made possible through many generous donations and grants from the SimpsonOhio Arts Council Innovation Grant, which was matched by the Coshocton Foundation, the Schooler Family Foundation, and Scott Butler; the Capital Arts Campaign, Our Town Grant with matching funds from Dean’s Jewelry; Make a Difference Day Grant through Gannett; and Robert and Carolyn Simpson.

“I extend Bob’s (Gibbs) congratulations on this space,” said Tim Ross, representative from Congressman Bob Gibbs’ office. “What a wonderful asset it will be to our community. It’s nice to have it come full circle and to see the end of this project. I remember when the Park Hotel burned down and it was an eyesore in the middle of town, so it’s great to see this come to fruition.”

In July 2014, the Pomerene Center for the Arts received the state grant and by spring 2015, Cornell was ready to start fundraising.

“Within hours of sending out these emails, Steve Mobley from Buckeye Brine came in with $30,000,” said Cornell. “It was a great encouragement to start off a capital campaign that I had no idea how to run.”

Cornell said that many groups and organizations have already utilized the artPARK and she hopes that in the future, more people will take advantage of the artPARK for concerts, art displays, and a place to come and socialize.

Cornell then invited Chuck Hathaway who did most of the construction of the items in the park, and Robert and Carolyn Simpson, to help cut the ribbon officially opening the space.

“Without this guy (Hathaway), this space would not be what it is today,” Cornell said.

After the ribbon was cut, those who had RSVP’d to the event was treated to lunch by Three Lil Piggies BBQ.

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Category: Arts & Entertainment

About the Author ()

I have been employed at the Coshocton County Beacon since September 2009 as a news reporter and assistant graphic artist. I am a 2004 graduate of Newcomerstown High School and a 2008 graduate of Capital University with a bachelor’s degree in Professional Writing. I am married to John Scott and live in Newcomerstown. We have two beautiful daughters, Amelia Grace Scott and Leanna Rose Scott.

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