$150K for NH-Maine bridge lights, park plannedAP , Associated Press
May. 13, 2013 10:32 AM ET
PORTSMOUTH, N.H. (AP) — A committee raising money to light up a new bridge connecting New Hampshire and Maine has reached its initial goal of $150,000.
Meanwhile, there's an effort to create a park in honor of veterans on the Portsmouth side of the Memorial Bridge.
More than 95 individuals and 28 area businesses and organizations combined have pledged or donated the amount toward the goal of $200,000 for the bridge, which is under construction and expected to open in July. It will replace a nearly 90-year-old bridge connecting Portsmouth, N.H., and Kittery, Maine.
Discussions have included installing LED lights to illuminate the bridge's towers, piers and a memorial plaque.
The original bridge honored World War I veterans and in keeping with tradition, a local businessman has proposed the memorial park.
Jim Teetzel owns Wilcox Industries in Newington, which makes tactical equipment for the U.S. Special Forces. He's pledged $25,000 for the park. The Portsmouth Freedom Memorial Park would honor veterans and those who have died in war and conflicts throughout the nation's history.
He tells the Portsmouth Herald (http://bit.ly/15Froc4) people have been invited to purchase pavers engraved with a loved one's name and military service.
"It's our way of providing a way for people to express gratitude to someone they know and love," he said.
A park design includes a fountain made of granite slabs from the original bridge with the words "Remember," ''Protect" and "Honor."
Information from: Portsmouth Herald, http://www.seacoastonline.com