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Westgate residents to create a book of history, stories
The rich history of Westgate is a point of pride for its community members, and the Westgate Neighborhood Association (WNA) is collaborating on a book to share its stories.
Initially planned as a neighborhood cookbook, which would function as a fundraiser, the idea evolved into a book of memories and neighborhood tales.
Historical sites like Camp Chase and Westgate Park, in conjunction with the recollections of long-time residents provide the WNA with an abundance of material.
WNA President Mari Ann Binder Futty said the project will includes oral histories shared by neighbors.
“To have all that combined and organized in a book would be wonderful,” Futty said.
At the beginning of February the WNA made an open call for photos, stories and recipes to be included in the book. Sandy Whitehead, who is coordinating the project, said she is already receiving feedback.
Whitehead said they are collecting memories and photos of how the neighborhood was long ago, what businesses have come and gone and what activities existed.
More recent recollections are also welcomed, such as a young couple who as first time homebuyers held their wedding in their backyard.
The WNA is also asking for fun and odd facts, such as ghost stories or unique architectural modifications to a home’s interior or exterior.
Additionally, entertaining tales of urban wildlife, in the likes of squirrels, possums or raccoons are also welcomed.
Futty said one interesting neighborhood story is about a residence that has two basements. The second basement was rumored to be a place where alcohol was allegedly distilled during prohibition.
The book will illustrate not only the stories of the past, but also modern trends to the community, like the practice of gardening and an increase in vegetarian and vegan lifestyles.
“There’s a lot to be proud of in the past and a lot to look forward to in the future,” Futty said.
Whitehead said they also want to include recipes. Whether it is a traditional meal served by a family or a recipe for a great picnic in the park. One resident even has a recipe for dog treats.
“This will be a fun book, a book of the people who live in Westgate and with some recipes thrown in,” Whitehead said.
The book is scheduled to be available in June and in time for the WNA’s annual Home and Garden Tour.
It will be available to purchase by the general public and the proceeds benefit the events and projects sponsored by the association.
Residents may submit stories and photos to email@example.com
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