Grove family donates furniture to Greencastle Chamber

April 07, 2004|by RICHARD F. BELISLE

GREENCASTLE, Pa. - A community room in the rear of the newly renovated Greencastle-Antrim Chamber of Commerce office will have new furniture thanks to a gift from Cora I. Grove, widow of local industrialist John L. Grove.

The room, which will serve as the chamber's board and committee meeting room as well as be available to rent to area groups and businesses, will be named in honor of the Groves, Dana Given, the chamber's executive director, said Tuesday.

A portrait of the Groves painted by Kentucky artist Samuel McKinney will hang in the new community room.

"The chamber is pleased to honor the Groves in this way," Given said. "The impact of Mr. Grove's economic contribution to this community is unparalleled. I only wish that we had been able to do this before he passed away."


Grove died in June at his home at 171 Apple Drive at age 82 following a long illness.

He and his brother, Dwight Grove, who died in 2000, and Wayne Nicarry, started what became Grove Worldwide, at one time Franklin County's largest employer.

Grove left the company in 1967 and started JLG Industries in McConnellsburg, Pa.

His philanthropic efforts include the John L. Grove Medical Center in Greencastle and the John L. Grove College of Business at Shippensburg (Pa.) University.

He and his brother, Dwight, donated a farm in Fulton County, Pa., that became Camp Sinoquipe, a camp for Mason-Dixon Council Boy Scouts.

The chamber began renovations of its building at 217 E. Baltimore St. in fall 2001. The project included replacement of the building's windows and installation of exterior vinyl siding.

The renovation of the interior of the century-old building began in January.

That work included turning a large storage room in the rear into the community room and adding a handicapped-accessible restroom, new carpeting, walls, ceilings, heating and air conditioning systems.

The community room will be equipped with 40 chairs, conference tables and a kitchenette.

An old garage out back will be razed to allow easier access to the parking lot, which will be paved.

"The chamber office is the front door of our community," Given said. "When I started at the chamber in May 1999, one of my goals was to do something about the building's badly worn condition."

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