A tribute to Bob and Susan Card
by Cameron Fisher
Apr 13, 2014 | 650 views | 0 0 comments | 35 35 recommendations | email to a friend | print
If you haven’t had a chance to drive down Raider Drive in the last couple of weeks, you need to do so and take a look at what’s being built adjacent to the playground. It’s a new multipurpose pavilion and it will soon be the newest addition to the Cleveland/Bradley County Greenway.

I knew somewhere down the road I was going to devote a column to this structure, but I am so impressed by it I wanted to go ahead and share how this amazing project has been gifted to our community.

It started late last year when I received a phone call from Mr. Bob Card, owner of Easy Auto and Sunrise Acceptance. Bob and his wife, Susan, are former neighbors of my parents. After he reminded me of that relationship, Mr. Card expressed his desire to give back to the community through a gift to the Greenway. After some discussion about dream projects, including a pavilion, Mr. Card asked me to present a proposal, so I contacted Fred Garmon, director of People for Care and Learning who in turn contacted Hugh Carver, leader of Men and Women of Action.

MWOA’s experience in building projects locally and around the world netted a detailed cost list for materials needed to produce a first-class structure. As the project was presented, it was made clear that MWOA wanted to build the pavilion at no charge for their labor. Mr. Card then donated $54,000 to cover the cost of the materials.

For the last three weeks, a crew of five or six volunteers has been using their talents and abilities to build our new pavilion. This is no ordinary, run-of-the-mill structure. Massive timbers were delivered about 10 days ago and the men carefully crafted 10 trusses, assembling them by hand and lowering them into place by a crane to create the framework.

This weekend the block work is being completed on a fireplace and chimney. In the next two weeks, river rock will be mortared in place on the columns and the fireplace to create the feel of an outdoor lodge. The aluminum roof will be set and will resemble the nearby restroom, which was also built as a gift to the community by MWOA and People for Care and Learning.

Another aspect of this pavilion construction is the establishment of electricity to the area via a new connection that will be accessible for special events at the Raider Drive Park area. In the past, electricity has had to be rented for a given period through unattractive temporary poles. This new installment allows for easier and less costly access for future events.

On the perimeter of the pavilion will be access sidewalks from all sides, and decorative and functional placement of more river rock. Then it will be landscaped in a fashion similar to the restroom to create a seamless connection with its surroundings.

When the pavilion is finished, I predict it will be the destination of choice for birthday parties, family picnics and other events. Like the Tinsley pavilion, there will be a reservation system in place to allow for maximum enjoyment by the community.

Thanks to the Card family, Men and Women of Action and People for Care and Learning for this wonderful asset that has not cost the community nor taxpayers a dime.

For more information about the Greenway and opportunities for giving through Friends of the Greenway, visit www.cbcgreenway.com.