A dedication ceremony was held at noon today for benches recently donated and installed at the Commodore Pump Sculpture near the Perrysburg Board of Education office building in downtown Perrysburg.
The two new benches are situated adjacent to the Old Town Pump sculpture created and donated by the late Ralph Kleeberger, a lifelong resident of Perrysburg and a well-loved educator.
One of the benches was donated by Friends of the Kleeberger Family, and the other was donated by All Thumbs Garden Club. Volunteers installed the benches.
PHOTO GALLERY: Click here to view images
The sculpture was dedicated in October, 2009 to “The Children of Perrysburg – Past, Present and Future.” The statue features a young boy and girl at the town pump. The bronze statute sits atop a 9,000-pound granite base on a concrete pad.
Mr. Kleeberger, a 1946 graduate of Perrysburg High School, began sculpting when he retired in 1986 from Northwood Schools where he was a business teacher and guidance counselor for about 30 years. He had worked off and on over the past six years on the clay sculpture of a boy and girl at the town pump, using two local children as his models, Samantha O’Neil and Griffin McCulloch. The Perrysburg Area Arts Council helped arrange for the casting of the sculpture by Flatlanders Sculpture Supply and Gallery in Blissfield and monitored the project. Mr. Kleeberger died Dec. 15, 2011.
“We are proud to have this opportunity to honor Ralph’s memory and his dream to share his art with our community,” stated Thomas L. Hosler, Perrysburg Schools Superintendent, said in a news release. “We are grateful to the Kleeberger Family & Friends and All Thumbs Garden Club for this wonderful addition of benches to the grounds near his beautiful sculpture. It’s partnerships like these that show how strong the bond is in our community.”
In related news, the Perrysburg school board officially named the property at the corner of Louisiana and Indiana Avenues The Commodore Schoolyard during its Sept. 4 meeting.