Create Buckhannon makes big plans for 2021


BUCKHANNON — Create Buckhannon has many projects underway for 2021 as warmer weather approaches. The group recently received good news when Governor Jim Justice announced that all forms of live music would be permitted, as the group’s beloved Festival Fridays are scheduled to resume this Summer starting on June 24 and ending August 27.

Create member Buck Edwards provided an update on their ongoing river access project that stems back several years ago from the group’s “What’s Next” initiative. A frequent request during the “What’s Next” town meetings, was better river access, according to Edwards. Create Buckhannon, in partnership with the DNR, Upshur County, and the City of Buckhannon, have since developed various river access points. Create Buckhannon’s first launch site and boat ramp became a reality four years ago at Hampton, with the help of Dominion Resources.

On March 13, the group completed a Kayak/Canoe launch site with parking in Alexander. Create Buckhannon is hopeful to complete additional launch sites in Alton and Ten Mile by the end of 2021 with the help of their partners. Edwards noted that the parking areas are not exclusive to kayakers and canoers, but fishermen and hikers as well.

Edwards also added that they are actively working on a fishing pier at the Buckhannon River Walk. Signage along the river walk exhibits the location of the future site. The group is currently seeking funding options through various organizations and entities. Edwards explained that since the ending of the pipeline in the area, they simply lack funding for the project, which was originally estimated at $75,000.

Create also has plans underway to sponsor a Community Rose Garden located at the River Walk near the main parking lot. The group had the first community planning meeting on Thursday, March 25 at the River Walk. The intention of the rose garden is to increase the livability of Buckhannon and Upshur County. Create, as well as the city, will be responsible for the construction and maintenance of the garden. However, the group is also seeking community volunteers, civic organizations, and clubs that would like to assist in the designing, construction and maintenance of the project.

The group is hopeful that this unique spot will become an attraction where community members can memorialize or honor individuals by purchasing roses. Edwards explained that a small plaque will be placed in front of each donated rose, naming the person being honored or remembered, the donator, as well as the name of the rose. The space will also be utilized for people to relax and socialize.

Over the next two months, Edwards would like to confirm a design to present to City Council for their approval. The location of the garden is in a FEMA controlled flood plain area, which will require certain restrictions on the structure. The tentative start date is late summer through fall for construction, in hopes of planting next spring. Donations will also be accepted for this ongoing project. For more information regarding Create Buckhannon’s Community Rose Garden, contact Buck Edwards by email at [email protected].

For the first time this year, Create Buckhannon also fired up the chicken cooker and resumed their BBQ chicken dinners on Saturday, March 27. They were set up across from Rent World on Rt. 20 and reportedly sold out of approximately 190 chickens within the first 30 minutes. Although not required, pre-orders are an option by emailing [email protected] to purchase dinners at upcoming sales.

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