Earhart Park in holding pattern
Town seeking funding to develop museum
Two years after work was initially started on Earhart Park, the Town of Harbour Grace is still looking for funding partners to help finish the project.
The town developed a parcel of land next to the first turnoff before heading towards Carbonear on Veterans Memorial Highway — known as Jamie’s Way — with an eye towards establishing a new regional museum at the site, dubbed Earhart Park.
The development currently completed is Phase 1 of the project, said Mayor Don Coombs, and the town is now looking for funding sources to work on the next two phases of the project, which would include the formation of the new museum.
“ We’re waiting for some parties to come by and work in a partnership on it,” he said.
Coombs said the town has worked with some investors to grade the property, which is located across from the entrance leading to the Earhart RV Park. Town employee Daphne Mercer toldThe Compassthose investors were unwilling to publicly divulge how much money they contributed to Phase 1 of the project.
The land has a circular mound of earth surrounded by a walking path made of decroative brick, with stairs climbing to a space that will eventually serve as the home of the Amelia Earhart statue, presently located by the Spirit of Labrador airplane. The statue was unveiled in 2007 to mark the 75th anniversary of Earhart’s solo flight across the Atlantic Ocean. She departed from the Harbour Grace air strip.
“It’s a regional museum not just dealing with the planes, but also the fishery and the region,” Coombs said, adding it would in no way be looking to replace the Conception Bay Museum on Water Street, which is operated by the provincial government.
Amongst those who have had involvement with the park project is Roger Pike from Air Labrador, who donated the Spirit of Labrador plane and the Earhart statue to the town and is originally from the community. Mr. Pike’s office told The Compass he would not be available to speak at this time.
The land pictured here next to the Veterans Memorial Highway in Harbour Grace was developed two years ago by the town, with an eye towards eventually building a regional museum. The town also plans to move the Amelia Earhart statue to the park.