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Town of Bath recognizes Berkeley Springs State Park

July 20, 2005|by TRISH RUDDER

trishr@herald-mail.com

BERKELEY SPRINGS, W.Va. - Tuesday's heat and humidity did not keep away a small group at the Gentlemen's Spring in Berkeley Springs State Park to watch Chris Hansroth, the park superintendent, accept the first Cornerstone of the Community Recognition Award given to park caretakers by Mayor Susan Webster and the Bath Town Council.

Water from the spring was served to the crowd, and a toast was made to Hansroth and the park employees and volunteers.

"This is everybody's park," Hansroth said. Thanking the park employees, he said, "They keep the place running. We are proud of this."

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Webster told the crowd the cornerstones of the community idea came up a few months ago when she started thinking about the people who have been the "true stalwarts" of the town and the members of the community who "live without a lot of fanfare."

"This resource brought us so much to this area. The good work the people have done in this state park is in the hands of Chris Hansroth and his loyal employees," Webster said.

J.R. Pope, the chief of parks for the West Virginia Department of Natural Resources, came from Charleston, W.Va., to be part of the celebration. He said he was thrilled that the park is the first cornerstone recipient. "Chris (Hansroth) and his staff make my job easier," Pope said.

Del. Charles S. Trump, R-Morgan, introduced Pope.

"West Virginia has a state park system second to none," Trump said.

Mary Lou Trump, president of the Berkeley Springs State Park Foundation, told the audience the park has been used for many activities, including Easter egg hunts, picnics and the annual Apple Butter Festival.

"The people of Morgan County love their parks - this one and Cacapon State Park," she said.

Webster said the purpose of the recognition is to "highlight the contribution of certain natural resources, organizations, businesses, historic places or other appropriate entities in the building and sustaining of the Town of Bath over its 229-year history."

This is the first cornerstone of the community, Webster said.

"There would not be a town here if there were no springs," she said.

A local group, the Sanders Sisters, sang a few songs, including "Cool Water." Even a couple of women in the crowd jumped into the knee-high Warm Springs Run and splashed around.

Arlene Verge, secretary of the park foundation, said, "This park is a little gem. Even though I'm not a native of Berkeley Springs, I am honored to serve the Berkeley Springs Park Foundation."

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