Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz and other local officials gathered for a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday for the new Gough Park in Perry Hall, marking start of construction of the park named for community founder Harry Dorsey Gough.
Officials said the 17-acre park, at the corner of Honeygo Boulevard and East Joppa Road, is designed to help address a shortage of playing fields in the Perry Hall community.
"The trees that are slow to grow bear the best fruit," said Kamenetz, quoting from Moliere, a 17th century French playwright. Kamenetz suggested the quote was appropriate, noting Gough Park has been 10 years in the planning process.
Gough Park, he said, "has been slow to grow, but will bear the best fruit."
The park will feature athletic fields, walking trails, 176 parking spaces, a comfort station and pavilions. The long-anticipated development of this park site will support multiple recreation council sports and activities in the Perry Hall area. It is expected to be completed in just over a year.
Other officials on hand included State Sen. Kathy Klausmeier, County Councilman David Marks and Barry Williams, director of the county's Department of Recreation and Parks.
"This open space has been unused since purchased by Baltimore County more than a decade ago, and now it will serve one of our largest recreation councils," said Marks, a Republican who represents Perry Hall. He expressed thanks to Kamenetz for, "finding the resources to complete this project in such a challenging economic environment."
Several local residents with longtime ties to recreation in the Perry Hall area also attended, including Jerry Soukup, one of the original founders of the Perry Hall Recreation Council in 1955; Tim Bonner, of the council's adult men's softball program; Barb Waskiewicz and Dave Roberts, co-chairs of Perry Paw Dog Park; Jack Amrhein of the Perry Hall Improvement Association; and Bill Paulshock, owner of Bill's Seafood.
County Department of Recreation and Parks Board Members Leslie Monfred and Chuck Munzert also attended, along with Ed Beranek, president of the White Marsh Recreation Council; Phil Winkler of White Marsh's baseball program; and Jeffrey Smith, vice president of the Maryland Recreation and Parks Association.