A centennial project built to last
Members from the Rotary Club of Del Mar, California, USA, give a helping hand on the construction of a new boardwalk that will run through the San Dieguito River Park.Photo by Bob Fuchs.
The Rotary Club of Del Mar, California, USA, started a community service project in 2005 that will leave a lasting impact on the San Dieguito River Park and the Del Mar community.
The San Dieguito River Park runs 57 miles from the Pacific Ocean at Del Mar to Volcan Mountain. When the park is completed, it will include connecting paths for hiking, biking, and horse trails. Lagoons, wetlands, and ponds will extend three miles inland.
The Del Mar club’s project to commemorate the Rotary centennial was initially aimed at constructing a quarter-mile trail from the park’s parking lot to the information center. The club paved the trail and put up trail markers under the supervision of a club member who is a contractor. According to Del Mar Rotarian Bob Fuchs, the club members enjoyed the project and wanted to do more.
“This project is helping our district build on something significant,” says Fuchs. “We started from the ground up, and it has given Rotary a lot of local visibility. We are fortunate to have the park in our back yard.”
The park’s director asked the club if it would install wood planks on an existing base to create a boardwalk over the wetlands, which will give visitors the sensation of walking on water. Using recycled wood from a demolished bridge, 50 Rotarians completed the project in one day, saving the park more than $40,000 on construction costs.
The Del Mar club recently started the Donate a Plank fundraising effort to build a trail stretching from the boardwalk to several miles inland. For $100, the donor gets a nameplate on a boardwalk plank. So far, members have raised more than $30,000.
“We have committed 5 to 10 more years of work in the San Dieguito River Park. We’re in it for the long haul – this isn’t a quick job. It has been, and will continue to be, a huge commitment,” said Marty Peters, past governor of District 5340. “It was something we wanted to do for our grandchildren.”
For more information on the project, including how to buy a nameplate, contact Bob Fuchs.