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Sylva Garden Club proposes pavilion for Bicentennial Park

The Sylva Garden Club is raising money to build a small pavilion in Bicentennial Park, a small green space located off Keener Street near the historic Jackson County Courthouse and library complex.

The pavilion, club president Diane Herring told Jackson County Commissioners, would be a place for families to congregate, book-lovers to read after checking out a book from the library and couples planning a small wedding to say their vows.  

“This is just a nice, beautiful place that you can go to the library, check out a book and enjoy sitting in a pretty garden,” Herring said. 

The pavilion will be 12 feet square with benches in each corner, electric outlets and handicapped accessibility. The club has spoken to county planning and parks and recreation staff, as well as to Sylva police, and has already begun fundraising. So far, it has $3,000, about half the total expected cost, and hopes to have the project done in one to five years. 

“We were wanting the county’s permission to put a pavilion and donate it to the county,” Herring said.  

Commissioners were favorable to the idea but declined to vote right away. 

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“We generally don’t take action on the first night we receive an item unless it’s something that’s pressing,” Commission Chairman Brian McMahan explained. 

He asked the garden club to come back with some more detailed drawings after the commissioners have had time to think about the proposal, emphasizing that this is definitely not the county telling the club “no.”

“I’m getting the feeling that there is a consensus that is somewhat OK and acceptable,” he said. 

— By Holly Kays

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