For anyone looking for a unique way to pay tribute to a lost loved one, the Town of Yarmouth may have just the solution. The Community Asset Donation Program allows individuals and organizations to make a general donation of items such as a tree, bench, work of art, or other structure as a way to recognize and honour others through a lasting tribute.
The contributions made through this program benefits our beautiful parks, urban forest, green spaces, the natural environment and the community as a whole. A number of individuals have found the program to be the ideal way to remember someone special while also making a valuable contribution toward beautifying our town. If you’re thinking of exploring the program in the same way, take a few minutes to read the short stories below from a few who have.
Ken Dennis on naming a bench at the top of Frost Park in Memory of his wife Sandy Dennis
There had been several ideas tossed around by various groups and individuals as to how to remember Sandy. Planting a tree or naming an event were mentioned. I came across some personalized benches and thought that would be a good idea. In particular, the bench that Councillor (Heather) Hatfield had placed for her husband Rick stood out. She directed me to see Todd Muise with the Town of Yarmouth, who explained the program. As we discussed locations, we happened to be in front of Frost Park and it “clicked”. What a perfect spot. Sandy was a councillor for six years up until her death and this location was very close to Town Hall. She was a founding member of Communities in Bloom Yarmouth and strived to improve Main Street. The chosen location is on Main Street, directly in front of Frost Park. Sandy loved Veterans and the Military and every year that she had her business on Main Street she had a Remembrance Day window display honouring Veterans. Furthermore, she organized the Yarmouth Cenotaph Remembrance Day Service the last three years of her life. This bench is situated right in front of Frost Park named after a decorated war veteran and directly across from and overlooking the Yarmouth Cenotaph. The inscription “Veteran’s Rest” is meant to be a place where veterans or anyone for that matter can sit and view the Yarmouth Cenotaph. The bench is intended to remember Sandy and that her memory lives on. We all agreed that the inscription was appropriate.
Anita Christian on naming a bench in Sealed Landers Park after her friend Linda Robertson Wyman
Linda Robertson grew up in Yarmouth. Her Dad Johnny Robertson owned the first Canadian Tire Stores in town, including the first store on Main Street, one on Collins Street in the 50s where Linda loved working, and a newer store on Starrs Road in the 70s. Linda was one person who you could simply never forget, and to her there was nothing as precious as old friends. She remembered everything about the 'old' days in Yarmouth. She never forgot a friend and never forgot to acknowledge a friend's remarks, or photos, or life stories. Linda always responded in a positive and caring way to anything her many friends were going through. She was as genuine as you could get. You could always depend on Linda to be there with a kind word. She loved to get together with her old Yarmouth friends and cousins and just loved to be around friends and family. I started a High School group on Facebook for those of us who went to YCMHS in the '60s and early '70s and Linda was one of the first to join. She was there every day with her usual kind and supportive comments.
Sadly, Linda passed away suddenly last summer after a camping trip. It was such a shock to us all and right away I thought 'what can we as a group do to keep Linda's memory alive'? Linda loved Lake Milo and spent her early years in Milton. I started talking to her cousins to get their input and we decided that a bench at Sealed Landers Park would be perfect. I asked people in the group what they thought of that idea and everyone was so positive and encouraging.
With the help of Yarmouth friends, I found out how to contact Sybil Stevens, Accountant at the Town Office and Todd Muise of the Town of Yarmouth Parks Department. Sybil helped me set up Linda's Memorial Fund and responded to me immediately the many times I requested the amount in the Fund. Todd has been so helpful every step of the way. He made the whole process easy. Whenever I had a question or suggestion, he got back to me right away. We met with him last fall in Sealed Landers Park and he had an idea for the perfect spot for Linda's bench. His crew installed the bench two weeks ago and the same day planted a yellow magnolia tree nearby with a memorial plaque. The whole process from the conception to completion was trouble free and we could not be happier with "Linda's spot". We will be waiting for the time when we can all gather in her spot to reflect on what she meant to so many. I thank everyone who has helped to make this idea a reality.
Sabrina Fevens on naming a bench at the top of Frost Park in Memory of her mother Susan Penney-LeBlanc
“November of 2020 marked the 10th anniversary of my mother’s passing. She left us just a few weeks shy of her 60th birthday. During my elementary and junior high years, we lived in town and walked downtown to shop. She always conveniently needed a break by the time we got to the park. Mom always loved to ‘people watch’ and there was never a time she would walk by Frost Park without taking a break on one of these benches. Our family felt it was best to honour her memory by placing a bench in front of the park on Main Street because taking a break on those benches is what she always loved to do. So we came together and raised the money, and then Todd Muise took care of the rest. I remember her and wave every time I see the bench.”
Councillor Heather Hatfield on naming a bench in Heritage Park in Memory of her husband Rick J. Doucette
For me placing a bench in Heritage Park in Rick's memory was an act of remembrance and healing. The park and the harbour are the view from our backyard so it was the perfect place for it. I can now sit in my backyard and see the bench. I love that I can go for a walk through the park and spend a few minutes sitting on the bench thinking of him. It gives me joy and I know that he would love it.
Doing it through the Community Asset Program was so easy. Todd Muise took care of everything for me all I had to do was pay. I would encourage anyone wanting to do the same to contact Todd Muise for information. It's a great way to give back to the community.
Contact Us Today for More Information on the Community Asset Donation Program
To donate by cheque or money order, make payable to:
Town of Yarmouth (Community Asset Donation Program)
400 Main Street