Nearly one year ago city officials and citizens stood outside the Ceres Community Center for a groundbreaking to build the Centennial Plaza, a landmark to commemorate the 2018 centennial of the city. One year later the work has stopped.
The delay was mostly due to the unanticipated delays of getting the brick pavers engraved which will be set inside of the circular shaped memorial space.
About 110 bricks have been purchased which are being finalized for engraving through a company called Bricks R Us based on Florida.
“We’re on the last batch of bricks,” said Lisa Mantarro Moore, a member of the Centennial Committee who agreed to take on the laborious project. “They’re doing them in sections. We’re moving along finally.”
Moore did not know exactly when the last of the bricks will be delivered and installed.
Each brick had to be proofed by the purchaser, she explained.
Moore said that in retrospect the planning for the plaza should have started years before the 2018 centennial celebration.
At the time of the February 2020 groundbreaking the plaza was intended to be done by late April in time for the first weekend in May, typically the date of the Ceres Street Faire. Along came COVID-19 lockdowns in March which put the brakes on a lot of projects.
Work on the plaza resumed in May when Public Works Department employee Tim Hartt applied brick veneer to the face of the masonry wall that encircles what will be the monument. At the time, Hartt said the project should be finished by summer. That was eight months ago and the project at the southwest corner of Fourth and Magnolia appears stalled.
Final costs have yet to be determined but the Ceres Centennial Committee has raised most of the estimated $20,000 to build a Centennial Plaza feature on Fourth Street near the Community Center. Chad Kennedy of O’Dell Engineering donated his time to design the plaza.