Rotarians hope to improve the landscape of Potter’s Field
By Nancy Vigran
Reporting for The Sun-Gazette
TULARE COUNTY – Six Tulare County Rotary Clubs are looking to spruce up the Tulare County Cemetery. The cemetery, located north of Traver, in the northwest corner of county, is less than an inviting place to visit.
According to a Rotary power-point presentation, “At present it contains one small monument sign, a bench and a flagpole. Weeds overgrow the field. There is no landscaping.”
The topic came up in conversation between Visalia Rotarian Paul Hurley and his wife, Pao-Lin. She had worked in the emergency room of Kaweah Delta Health Medical Center for years, and is well aware of the cemetery where those who cannot afford burial expenses are laid to rest. She is also aware of the condition of the cemetery.
“It’s kind of scruffy,” Paul Hurley said, recounting his wife’s input.
Hurley thought to bring it to the attention of fellow Rotarians.
“District grants for multiple clubs can be applied for with a commitment of $500 per club. District 5230 will then contribute $2,000 for each club that participates,” he stated in a presentation to the Board of Supervisors.
Six clubs have joined the cause including Visalia Rotary, Dinuba Rotary, Tulare Rotary, Visalia County Center Rotary, Visalia Sunset Rotary, and the Visalia Latino Rotary Club. If accepted by Rotary District 5230, which encompasses all of Monterey, Fresno, Tulare and Kings Counties, that would bring in $15,000 for the cause.
Minor beautification could include an entrance sitting area for visitors, planting of native trees and shrubs, and an additional monument, Hurley said.
The cemetery property actually encompasses two unique cemeteries. Dating back to 1888, the Traver Pioneer Cemetery bears the remains of early settlers to the Tulare County area. The second portion, is the county’s Potter’s Field.
“We need to show that the county is paying some attention to the property, and that they care,” Hurley said.
In 2013, the County had made some improvements and repairs. The fence was painted, the monument sign was installed, and some landscape improvements were made to Potter’s Field.
Hurley has the full support of the county’s Board of Supervisors, who voted 5-0 to accept the idea of added improvements.
“They are very excited,” he added.
The funds application will be presented to Rotary District 5230 by the end of the month, with response coming as early as the end of August, or early September.
If granted, county workers would do the work with the help of some Rotarians, Hurley said.