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Fountain restoration completed

WINSTED — Mitchell Fountain in East End Park has been completely restored and will be back in operation sometime in the spring.Work on restoring the fountain began in July and was undertaken by William H. Parsons Masonry of Cooperstown, N.Y.The intent of the project was to restore the fountain to the way it was at its installation in 1883, when it was donated to the town by Mary Ann Blake Mitchell. Masonry and stone work around the fountain was restored, and a new system will recycle the water. New lights were installed at the basin.According to town Purchasing Agent Mark Douglass, the cost of restoring the fountain was $52,000, and the funds came out of a Small Town Economic Assistance Program (STEAP) grant received by the town.“This was the final piece of a renovation project for the park,” Douglass said. “We received two different STEAP grants for projects around the park. The first one paid to construct new sidewalks around the park. The second one helped us get new bollards and railings.”As for the fountain, Douglass said it will be reactivated at a dedication ceremony in the spring.“It’s going to look very nice when it starts up again,” he said. “The water will come up from the top, then cascade to the bottom like it did when it was first installed. It didn’t come out from the top for the longest time. We’re hoping the fountain will be a focal point to the park area, and it will bring more people to the park itself.”

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