When Anna Paula Casey and her husband returned home to Canyon Lake from a trip some 14 years ago, they brought back an idea and a dream.
“We went to Ponca City, Okla., and saw the bricks with names engraved in them around city hall,” she says. “We came back real excited and presented the idea the library board.”
Originally called the Tye Preston Brick Parade, the project was used to raise money for a 2,500-square-foot expansion that would create a much-needed community meeting room. The fundraiser began in February 1995 with an initial goal was $100,000. Before the year was up, $90,000 had been raised and the final goal was met by July 1996.
Today, this Pathway of Friends, as it is now known, includes more than 1200 bricks and granite blocks. It filled the walkway in front of the first library building and circled around the fountain, serving as a reminder to every visitor that when a community joins forces, great things can be accomplished. Over the years, money raised from the sponsorships have helped fund various library projects.
“When we started this, we thought it was a good way to memorialize a loved one,” Casey says. “It’s fun to walk along and see names you recognize, it’s a real treat. But more importantly, it helps the library and the library is good for the community.”
All the bricks and blocks were moved to the new library courtyard in July 2010.