Sarina Dellinger: Happenings at Hurley Park

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 1, 2023

By Sarina Dellinger
For the Salisbury Post

As we’ve seen this week all around Salisbury, Mother Nature is a force that does what she wants. For me, here at Hurley Park, it’s a reminder that our efforts are futile in controlling her whims. We’ve had a few washouts, multiple trees falling, and the weeds have kept on growing.

Unfortunately, one of the fallen trees landed right on top of our larger gazebo. It is easy to reminisce on the history of the pieces we’re picking up as clean-up continues. Installed in the winter of 1986, it quickly became the symbol of Hurley Park. “The Gazebo” was dedicated to Haden Holmes Hurley, son of Elizabeth Holmes Hurley for whom the park is named. People have stopped me in the park all week to tell me of their prom, maternity and wedding photos taken at the gazebo. Others mention picnics and family outings enjoyed in the shade of the gazebo. Our top question is “Are you rebuilding?” and the short answer is yes. It will take some time to resolve the details, but to many of us the gazebo is the heart of Hurley Park and it wouldn’t be the same without it!

The other question I have received multiple times is “Are you fundraising to help replace it?” We do not have a specific fundraiser set up for the gazebo repair. However, donations to the Hurley Park Foundation are always welcome and appreciated. Donations can be made to Foundation for the Carolinas at 220 North Tryon Street, Charlotte, NC, 28202. Please make checks payable to Foundation for the Carolinas with Hurley Park Fund #2524 in the memo line. To donate to the park online, go to All donations are tax-deductible and deposited into the Elizabeth Holmes Hurley Memorial Park Fund.

Other happenings around the park include repairs to our stonework across the park. Stuart Vanhoy Stone Masonry is working to rebuild the James B. Gascoigne Fern Glade wall and re-secure multiple stones at our entrance stairs. Much of our stonework is original to the park and in need of new mortar to secure it for the next almost 40 years at Hurley Park. In addition to this, Cline’s Landscapes will be repairing and re-grading some of our swale bridges to help water flow efficiently within Hurley Park. In addition to that, many have been enjoying the recently installed picnic tables at Gordon’s Bridge and Gathering Place. In the next few weeks, we’ll be adding an additional trash can to the new picnic area, but in the meantime, there is one up the hill from this area next to Scamp’s Garden and the smaller gazebo.

Summer is a busy season for the park with many blooms, creatures, and shady spots to enjoy. We hope to see you soon at Hurley Park!

Sarina Dellinger is public garden supervisor for Salisbury Parks and Rec.

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