About 80 attendees looked on at a simple ceremony Saturday, Jan. 11, as a plaque was unveiled marking the new Rotary Peace through Service Garden by the Cambria Veterans Memorial Flag Stand at the corner of Main Street and Cambria Drive.
The $20,000 project, spearheaded by the two Rotary Clubs in Cambria, the Rotary Club of Cambria and the Cambria Sunrise Centennial Rotary Club, gave a major makeover the area between the Veterans Memorial Building parking lot and Main Street.
The Cambria Services District chipped in with permission to use its land and other assistance, the county of San Luis Obispo with the installation of a sidewalk, and Cambria American Legion Post No. 432 with planning coordination and other contributions. The garden was designed by Shana McCormick of Great Gardens Landscape Design in Cambria.
During remarks prior to the unveiling, past Rotary Club of Cambria President Greg Sanders noted how the new garden complements the existing veterans memorial. Both, he said, are testimonials to achieving peace through service.
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“Some people have commented that there is a sharp contrast between the Flag Memorial (surrounded by the Peace Garden), which is symbolic of the sacrifices of our nation's veterans and the wars in which they have fought, and the Peace Garden, which symbolizes Rotary International's quest for world peace,” Sanders said. “Let me assure you that is the furthest from the truth. Ask any veteran, particularly a combat veteran about peace. Nobody yearns for peace more than a soldier, sailor, airman or Marine who is actively engaging the enemy. So, Rotary’s Peace Garden complements the Flag Memorial.”
The plaque reads: “The Rotary Peace Through Service Garden is a living memorial dedicated January 11, 2014 by the Rotary Clubs of Cambria to the residents of Cambria and Rotary Internationals quest for world peace through service to mankind. With grateful appreciation to the Cambria Community Services District and the County of San Luis Obispo for donation of the Peace Garden site,” followed by a listing of major donors and the Rotary logo.