Letter to the Editor: Needed Improvements to Historical Site Don’t Exclude Dog Park Expansion

I am writing to express my sincere disappointment in the Egg Harbor Historical Society and the Town of Egg Harbor in regard to the state of disrepair that they have let the playground to the west of Fire Station #1 – one of the few properties left with historical significance – fall into.

Growing up in Egg Harbor, and with my mom attending the school, I am fully aware of the significance and importance of the old school site. I am also aware of its current state and condition. Letting a site fall into such disrepair and having a hidden plaque is not the way to express the authenticity of our community, nor is it a way to honor and respect those who attended and worked at the school. Shame on the historical society and the town. 

They’ve been in the position of power for years to make the much-needed improvements to the site, so why hasn’t anything been done? Why have no proposals been made? I think the historical society and the town have some explaining to do to the community and former students and faculty for their inaction and neglect of this historical site over the past five to 10 years.

The Village of Egg Harbor has recently made a proposal to change the boundary of the dog park. This is a huge opportunity for the historical society and town to finally do what they have needed to do for years: install new playground equipment, make the site more inviting and better interpret and memorialize the old school. This can all be done in coordination and collaboration with the village. 

As a landscape designer, I know that the dog-park expansion does not have to mean the erasure of memory or the loss of a historical site; in fact, if done correctly, it can mean greater visibility for the historical site and better usage by the community, and it can make Egg Harbor’s history come alive for future generations: the exact mission of the historical society.

Max Dickson

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania