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After 30-year drought, city fountain working again

Laurens, South Carolina – The large fountain by the Laurens Police station at the corner of West Laurens and Church streets has stood dry a long time but last week its water began spraying skyward again, and it’s just in time for the upcoming completion of the expanded department.
“From what we’ve heard, the last time the fountain worked was about 1995 or so,” said Laurens City Administrator Eric Delgado. “Especially with the renovation of the police station and the judicial center, we really wanted to get the fountain going again and we’re glad it finally worked out.”
The fountain was established in 1974 as a tribute to veterans, Delgado said.
“For one thing, leaving things in disrepair doesn’t look good for the city,” Delgado said. “But it was originally established to honor our veterans. For all the sacrifices our veterans have made, it was only right that we do what we could to honor them by fixing it.”
Repairs were not easy to come by.
The company which initially installed the fountain was no longer in business, and an estimate by a fountain company last year came to $90,000 so the city was looking for other alternatives. Delgado asked the reputable plumbing company working on the police station renovations to take a look at it, and their staff was able to rebuild the fountain for $20,000.
“$20,000 was a lot better than $90,000, and we were able to pay for that using money from the city’s capital projects and community development funds,” Delgado said.
In 1974 the fountain was initially paid for by American Legion Post 25 and the current post members plan this summer to handle the procurement and engraving of pavers to continue to honor veterans and any first responders.
“We want to do this as another way to give back to the community,” said Post 25 Commander Kevin Farnsworth. “We’ll start this summer selling the pavers and handling the engraving so family members and friends can honor veterans and first responders.”
The American Legion Post 25 enjoys taking on projects that can honor those who serve, he said, and since the original Post 25 members built the fountain in 1974, this seemed a great way to continue the work.
“We’re not hard to find,” Farnsworth said, referring to their bright blue tent that is at almost every downtown event. “We will have an application available. Some we will want to donate as a Post, such as pavers for King Dixon and others who have been important to the community. But we’ll make the applications readily available to start the project, probably in July.”

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