Peace Garden Dedicated at Side Cut

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Maumee Rotary Services Foundation in partnership with Metroparks Toledo is funding a three-phase project to make improvements to Locks 3 and 4 at Side Cut Metropark. The first phase, just completed, is a Peace Garden at the base of Lock 4.

Michele Free, who served as Rotary Club of Maumee President in 2018-2019, was inspired by a visit to Chicago where she learned of a Peace Garden at the home of Paul Harris, founder of Rotary International.

World Peace is one the pillars of Rotary International. The Peace Garden is designed to create a serene environment with plants, seating and the sounds of water trickling over the rocks, where visitors can reflect and find peace in a noisy world.  

Side Cut, the first Metropark, marked its 90th anniversary this year. The park was established in 1930 when the Metropolitan Park District of the Toledo Area leased the former canal lands from the state.

Four original locks preserved in the park were part of an extension, or “side cut,” connecting the Maimi & Erie Canal used in the mid-1800s with “Maumee City” and the Maumee River, which was a hub of commerce.

Maumee Rotary has been a longtime supporter of Side Cut. Just across the road from the Silver Lake Area is the Rotary Pavilion, a large picnic shelter that was a gift from the community service club.


Photo: Michele Free cuts the ribbon on the Peace Garden at a recent gathering to commemorate the occasion.