The Chestertown Recreation Commission recently received a $28,000 boost from County Covid Relief funds to further develop Louisa d’Andelot Carpenter Park with a swing set and barbecues.
Long-term plans for the park located in the Washington Park subdivision off Flatland Rd. are even more ambitious, with the hope to interconnect the area to the broader Chestertown community and County.
Think walking trails, bike paths, and nature preservation.
A Chestertown Recreation Commission and Washington Park Association project, the park was dedicated in 2017 to philanthropist Louisa d’Andelot Carpenter and enhanced with a new pavilion, benches, and resurfaced three-quarter basketball court in 2020.
CRC member Jim Bogden would like to see connectivity begin with a walking path connecting the park with Coventry Farms as the first step to wider connectivity with the community.
“What we would like to do is build this up to be Chestertown’s second major playground after Wilmer Park,” Bogden says. “We want to connect these two communities. That would justify building a larger playground here.”
Bogden says the CRC has plans to open up the Radcliff Valley region with paths for nature walks. “The path to Coventry Farm would just be the first step.”
The Town Comprehensive Plan already calls for bike paths in the area. Bogden wants to supplement those with footpaths and foot bridges over the creek.
None of this would have been possible without the park’s namesake, Louisa d’Andelot Carpenter. A philanthropist, Carpenter lived in Kent and Talbot Counties. Her many contributions to the Eastern Shore include the 1953 donation of property to found Camp Easter Seal in Fairlee; an expansive addition to Chestertown Hospital; a bowling alley (across the Chester River Bridge on Church Hill Rd.), and the area now dedicated to her.
In 1953, Carpenter, through her Springfield Foundation, donated the Washington Park subdivision to create affordable housing for low-income families, even subsidizing their mortgages. It included the park area and for a while, even had a swimming pool dedicated to her friend Vivian Vance of “I Love Lucy” fame.
The Spy met with Jim Bogden to talk about the park and future plans.
This video is approximately four minutes in length.