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Methuen’s State of the City

Last night Methuen’s Mayor Manzi gave his 2009, State of the City address . . . the speech highlights are posted on his blog @ BillManzi.com and the entire text downloadable as a PDF file.

Below I have excerpted the section regarding parks, recreation and rail trail:

“During the summer, Forest Lake is a refuge from the heat for many Methuen residents. Unfortunately, due to high bacteria levels, the lake has been closed to swimming for significant parts of the last few summers. Last year, I put a team together to conduct further testing, improve land management, increase filtration and enhance animal control. As a result, the lake was able to stay open for the remainder of the summer after the improvements were made. I will continue these efforts this year and look forward to working with the revitalized Forest Lake Association.

Continuing on the subject of parks and recreation, plans for the new park and boat ramp at the former Bea’s restaurant site have been finalized and I expect construction work to begin this spring. Plans are also underway for the non-profit Trauma Intervention Program (TIP) to create and take stewardship of a “Healing Garden” at Henry P. Schruender Memorial Park on the Merrimack River. The garden will be a place for meditation and reflection. My thanks to Jayann Landry of T.I.P. and City Councilor Deborah Quinn, who have worked hard to make this possible. It will be the first Healing Garden in the area. Initial plans are also underway to construct a “rail-trail” along the abandoned rail line that runs through downtown Methuen.

Methuen is a city that is very much alive with culture and history. Last year I was happy to establish a summer concert series in historic Grey Court Park. The series was very popular and I look forward to doing it again this year. My thanks to Paul and Denis Webster Greene for all of their hard work on this concert series. The City’s Artist of the Month program continues to thrive. I look forward to meeting Methuen’s talented artists every month as they hang their work in my office.

We are close to finalizing an arrangement to move Methuen’s historic collection into the former Central School building. Last year the need for better space was highlighted by the near destruction of a priceless Robert Frost attendance register. Luckily, the register was recovered before it was damaged and was displayed publicly for the first time ever.”

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