Habitat for Humanity of Broward dedicated the Bob and Sherry Taylor Park which houses the JM Family KaBOOM! Playground and Mary N. Porter Reading Garden on Saturday, Jan. 11 at “A Rick Case Habitat Community” in Pompano Beach.
Pompano Mayor Rex Hardin & Nancy Robin, CEO & Exec. Director of Habitat for Humanity.
Dignitaries at the event included Patricia Williams, State of Florida Representative; Lamar Fisher, Broward County Commissioner; Rex Hardin, Mayor of the City of Pompano Beach (COPB) and Beverly Perkins, City of Pompano Beach Commissioner.
Taylor family with Nancy Robin of Habitat for Humanity.
“When we envisioned this new community, we knew a small park had to be part of the plan. The Taylors, Burdette Beckmann, Inc. (BBi), JM Family Enterprises, the City of Pompano Beach and our families had a vision for this space,” said Nancy Robin, CEO and Executive Director of Habitat Broward. “The Bob and Sherry Taylor Park we dedicated is the result of that vision and our amazing community partners.”
Robert Taylor, Jr. explained how his parents, Bob and Sherry, for whom he named the park, instilled in the family that life was about more than just giving back. “We were taught to ‘Love thy neighbor as thyself’ (Matthew 22:39), and that is what Habitat is all about.” Taylor also acknowledged the hard work and support of his team at BBi.
JM Family was also acknowledged for its sponsorship of the KaBOOM! playground, which their associates helped to construct in a single day. The Deerfield Beach-based automotive company began its partnership with Habitat for Humanity of Broward in 2002 and, since that time, has been a part of building and dedicating 35 homes. In fact, prior to the park dedication, JM Family associates were hard at work on four houses they are currently sponsoring in the community, which will bring their total Habitat homes to 39. Representing JM Family were Brent Burns, president and CEO; and Colin Brown, chairman of the board.
Rex Hardin and the City of Pompano Beach were thanked for helping Habitat create the park, children’s playground and reading garden, which are accessible to residents of the community and the surrounding area.
Linda Carter, president and CEO of the Community Foundation of Broward was thanked for its $1 million grant from the Mary N. Porter Legacy Fund. Carter shared that Miss Porter’s family stood for building community and serving others. The Mary N. Porter Reading Garden recognizes Ms. Porter’s gift…as does the park’s bronze statue of Miss Porter as a child, sculpted by Robert St. Croix.
Entertainment included a butterfly stilt-walker and balloon artist, courtesy of Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino and an ice cream truck that provided complimentary scoops by Hoffman’s Chocolates.
Special guest Roy Rogers helped the children release butterflies in the new garden. Rogers has installed more than 100 butterfly gardens throughout Broward schools, parks and houses of worship.
Additionally, youth from Cypress Bay and Cardinal Gibbons High Schools assisted with the day’s activities.