Updated: Jun 24
By Edie Johnson
Newburgh Mayor Torrence Harvey cuts the ribbon with the help of Jonathan Jacobson, while Councilman Anthony Grice and his young helper (left) and Councilman Omari Shakur (right) hold the ribbon ends
Sunday's rain stopped just long enough in the afternoon for Newburgh Mayor Torrance Harvey, City Manager Todd Venning, councilmembers Grice, Sklarz, Shakur, and Assemblyman Jonathan Jacobson among others to cut the ribbon announcing the official opening of Tyrone Crabb and Xavier Lunan Splash Parks to the sound of laughing and happily screaming children. The glee was so infectious that it got everyone present laughing. Mayor Harvey said it is just one of the ways they are making a big effort toward positive things in the City, especially for the children. They feel it's the least they can do while the new Aquatic Center at Delano Hitch Park is being demolished and rebuilt. He said the design is about 90% done, the working drawings are up online, and demolition is expected to begin in July for a fabulous new pool.. Meanwhile, this is just one of many efforts to ensure a happy Summer that will include numerous events at these parks. Assemblyman Jacobson added that one of the best things about them is that they are right in local neighborhoods and just a few blocks to walk for many families..The children were thrilled to be helping with the countdowns and have their picture taken while participating and then playing with the splash buttons which stream water in several different designs.
They even did a trial run at Tyrone Crabb, making sure it would work for the countdown. Mayor Harvey war a good sport as he stepped right into the spray in his suit and tie, gave a thumbs up on the display just before he got a good dousing when someone thought it fun to change the setting..
Xavier Lunan Splash Park Opens in "The Heights" of Newburgh
Thirteen years of hard work by Officials, residents like Shelly Starkey and Coach Leonard Lee turned this place of a horrific tragedy into a place full of joy and future hopes
Xavier Lunan Park is named after the death of a 3-year old boy as the result of domestic violence. His mother's boyfriend killed the young toddler.. Both she and the man have since been sent to jail.. His brother, Andrew, attended today's ceremony, thanking and shaking hands with Mayor Harvey as they both committed to continue fighting the violence in homes that tears families apart and often ends with death or severe injury along with devastating impacts on the future of each family member. ``Andrew said that prior to the murder he had been beaten every day of his life, was actually present during the murder, and said he hopes that this park, along with his work on the non-profit www.Freebirdnation.com, will lead to happier home lives, emphatically saying "I believe in Newburgh.."