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CHARLESTOWN - Memorial Day Weekend is not only a celebration of brave soldiers who have made the ultimate sacrifice for their homeland, it has also become a celebration of the changing of the season and the coming of summer. This is no more evident than along the sandy coast of southern Rhode Island, when the weekend serves as the unofficial first group of beach days of the year.
This year, Memorial Day Weekend at Charlestown Town Beach had a new element making its summer debut - the new beach pavilion and rest room area, which officially opened last Thursday, May 24.
According to Parks and Recreation Director Jay Primiano, the first weekend during which the new pavilion was open was a success. He said that it was a great weekend at both beaches, even though the pavilion at Blue Shutters Beach is not open yet.
However, that pavilion will open very soon. Primiano said that the Blue Shutters Beach pavilion will open this coming weekend at the earliest, and the following weekend at the latest.
The ceremony last Thursday was a celebration of the projectâ€™s swift completion. Primiano stood high above the assembled crowd on the top deck of the pavilion, and thanked each and every member of the town staff, both current and departed, who had a hand in ensuring the pavilion was built.
There was much applause, many handshakes, a few photo opportunities, and of course, the ceremonial ribbon cutting.
Primiano, Parks and Recreation Commission Chair Paula Anderson, and Town Council President Tom Gentz held the giant scissors together, as they snipped the yellow ribbon suspended along the posts that hold up the pavilionâ€™s deck.
â€śToday, the citizens of Charlestown have spoken,â€ť Primiano said when he addressed the crowd before the ribbon cutting. â€śBold leadership took us here from the Town Council, from the Parks and Recreation Commission chaired by the very competent Paula Anderson and co-chaired by Cheryl Dowdell with Greg Avedisian serving as the Town Councilâ€™s Liaison.â€ť
Primiano also thanked the ad hoc committee that worked on pushing the project forward. The committee was also chaired by Anderson and included Avedisian as the Town Council representative. Other members of the ad hoc committee were current acting Town Administrator Pat Anderson, former Town Administrator Bill DiLibero, Peter Ogle, Peter Arnold, Henry Heminway, Forrester Safford, Frank Glista, Dowdell and Primiano.
For more information, pick up a copy of The Chariho Times.