A new kind of “living” Veterans park
The North Carolina Veterans Park welcomes veterans, families and visitors in Fayetteville, North Carolina with a unique message about life’s journey for today’s veterans. Vandewalle & Associates is proud to have been instrumental in the development of North Carolina Veterans Park’s powerful messages, thematics, and creation of unique visitor experiences. In the early phases of park development, V&A’s Dean Proctor met with veterans, care givers, and other groups to go beyond traditional veterans park memorials of the past, and explore deeper meanings, positive messages, and support themes that returning veterans can use in their lives today.
Visitors can experience the veterans’ journey from their homes and families into one of five branches of service. Three main plazas symbolize veterans’ life experiences before, during, and after service. Some of the features within include:
- Pride and Purpose Tower, with adjacent ceremonial light cannon that welcomes troops home
- Reflective and Color Gardens with native plantings
- Camaraderie Plaza, a place to meet, share stories and experiences
- Meaningful features carved from native North Carolina granite, and others filled with native soils
- Community columns, symbolizing the friends, family and community members who support members of the military
- Sculptures symbolizing key words of service, and created from actual salvaged military artifacts
The grand opening of the park took place on July 4, 2011 and drew some 2,000 visitors who were able to “walk in the footsteps” of North Carolina’s honored veterans on opening day. Speaking were Governor Bev Purdue, Senator Kay Hagan, and Veterans Administration Assistant Secretary Jose Riojas.