4.15.20. Like most, I’m isolating at home while avoiding public spaces and people. Even though I’ve had the Laukkonen Design studio in my home for ages, it’s tough. But nothing compared to the healthcare and essential workers, who struggle every day to deal with COVID-19.
I’m grateful for small things—grocery delivery, and an online reunion of Fortino/Moriarity Advertising, with six friends stretching from Italy to Los Angeles to Minneapolis.
Luckily, Restore Lilac Way has a large online footprint that keeps us connected.
The Facebook group has almost 800 members who post interesting comments and history. I limit my posts to cool historical info, restoration updates, and Lilac Way stories and trivia. I also post a lot of old photos from MnDOT and the Minnesota Historical Society.
The restorelilacway.com website has tons of cool info across 80 pages. Learn about the quirky beehive fireplaces, the Landscape Architect that designed the seven roadside parks, and the men who built Lilac Way as a WPA project during the Great Depression.
Get to know Carl Graeser, the German engineer with a wooden leg. As ‘the Father of the Belt Line’, he built Highway 100’s Lilac Way.
You can learn more about the three original 1939 parks that still remain today – Graeser Park, SLP’s Rock Island and the restored Lilac Park.
Events are on hold.
Sadly, most of my big plans for the first Restore Lilac Way Event Series were postponed before I got a chance to announce them. Fingers crossed, there may be one in August while we look to reschedule for 2021.
Group cleanup events under the stewardship of the Robbinsdale Lions for Graeser Park are also on hold, as is the May 2nd 2020 Rock Island cleanup day.
Get a cool drink and take a virtual drive down Lilac Way.
With nearly 55 photo galleries, you can stroll through the seven parks in 1939, the building of Highway 100, the restoration of Lilac Park, and more. And that’s just to get started.
Thanks to all the fans and supporters of this volunteer project—Karen Laukkonen, Website Designer and Lilac Way Enthusiast
Seven roadside parks
Graeser Park, Robbinsdale
Lilac Park, restored, St. Louis Park
Building the Belt Line, Highway 100 and Lilac Way