The board of directors of Prairie Lawn Cemetery held its annual meeting Jan. 19 in the Peabody City Building. New board members and officers were elected.
“We had a good turnout of eligible voters,” board secretary-treasurer Carmen South said. “We haven’t always had that kind of attendance at our annual meetings and we do appreciate the interest and support from the community.”
Anyone who owns a cemetery plot or lives in the cemetery district is eligible to run for the board, nominate prospective board members, and vote in elections.
Mike Berger and Vickie Cook were elected to the board, replacing Delbert Mellott and Virginia Skinner. Berger and Cook each will serve a five-year term.
Board president Bob McVey declined another term as president. Maurice Meirowsky was elected to take his place. Randy Dallke was elected vice president and Carmen South was elected secretary-treasurer.
The board reviewed the capital campaign that started in December to raise funds to replace the fence along the west side of the cemetery. Letters were sent to individuals who have exhibited an interest in Prairie Lawn Cemetery and the Peabody community, requesting donations to help fund the “Fence by the Foot” project.
“We had a good response to the letter,” South said. “At the January meeting we selected the fence that best suits our needs and decided to try to raise the balance of the money and get the fence installed before Memorial Day.”
The fence is black powder-coated galvanized steel. It is four feet tall, with vertical pickets and three horizontal rails. There are no spikes at the top or bottom. It will be installed in eight-foot sections. The original cemetery gates, installed in 1904, will remain in place.
The new fence will cost about $15 a foot and 1,500 feet are needed. The old wire fencing has been taken down.
The board agreed to focus next on local donors and cemetery district members, in hopes of raising the balance of the funds needed.
South said the cemetery board is planning to recognize donors who make a contribution of $250, $500, or $1,000 with plaques, permanently installed at Prairie Lawn.
“We feel Prairie Lawn is one of the most beautiful cemeteries around. And there have been several major improvements made recently,” South added. “The new directory and stone shelter are in place, along with new stone section markers, and raised landscaping at the “V” in the road. More landscaping is planned. We think the new fence will enhance the 100-year old facility.”
A clip-out form is available in this issue of the Peabody Gazette-Bulletin for anyone wishing to contribute to the Prairie Lawn Fence project. For more information, contact South at (620) 983-2512 or Meirowsky at (620) 983-2881.