Memorial space available still in Miner's Statue Plaza

Photo by Tamie Meck People can still purchase space for memorials along the granite walls bordering the newly refurbished Miner's Statue Plaza at Paonia Town Park. Contact Paonia Town Hall for more information.

With renovation of the Miner's Statue Plaza at Paonia Town Park completed this summer, the committee overseeing the project is hoping to begin installing granite plaques on the two memorial walls installed as part of the project. The walls are intended to commemorate miners and those who contributed to development of the North Fork Valley, the community, industries and Paonia Town Park.

According to Paonia resident David Bradford, who is leading the effort, the committee of miners and community members formed to complete the project is looking to begin purchasing the granite at a cost of $8,000 for both walls. The next step, engraving and installation of plaques on the north wall, is estimated at $11,100, and engraving and installation of the east wall is estimated at $6,500, for a total cost of $25,600.

Thus far, 20 individuals and entities have purchased space on the wall and two others have donated money for a total collection of $5,750. If the committee is unable to collect enough funds, the goals will be revised, said Bradford.

The walls have enough surface space to generate more than $40,000. Additional funds raised will go toward replacement of the name plaque at the base of the statue, said Bradford. The plaque would correct misspelled names and standardize the font type, with all remaining funds going toward maintenance of the area and additional park benches.

Granite panels are available in three sizes: small 4X8-, medium 8X8- and large 12X12-inches, with costs ranging from $100 to $300 per panel. Small spaces can accommodate up to four lines at 20 characters per line (80 characters total) and cost $100; 8X8 panels can be engraved with eight lines of 20 characters (160 total) for $200; and the large 12X12 plaques can accommodate 12 lines with 25 characters per line (300 total) for $250.

Memorials should commemorate those who contributed to or supported development of the North Fork Valley, the community, industry, and Paonia Town Park. Only the names of individual or entities will be allowed on the wall and all submissions must be approved by the Town of Paonia.

For an additional $50, a symbol can be engraved on either the medium or large panels, and reduce the amount of space available for lettering. Symbols were selected by the committee to represent the coal mining industry, mine rescue, the fruit orchard industry, the ranching industry, Mount Lamborn and Landsend, and a spruce tree.

Links to the statue's history, names of the miners memorialized and the year they lost their lives, a flyer and plaque application, images of symbols and examples of memorial plaques are available at

Application forms and flyers are also available Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. at Town Hall, 214 Grand Avenue.

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