Schools and arts organizations are being notified that artist designs are being sought for a memorial at the Ulster County Fairgrounds in New Paltz to commemorate the sacrifices and strength of the community during the Covid pandemic.
Established in March 2022 by former county executive Pat Ryan, the Covid 19 Commemoration Commission has begun accepting design proposals from artists for a sculpture that will become the centerpiece of a memorial garden in Ulster County. The Request for Artist Designs is open through November 15.
The project, planned for a spring installation at the fairgrounds, “is to be a space for rest and reflection with interpretive signage linked to a website which will feature the stories of front-line workers and other members of the community,” according to the county government.
“This unprecedented time took its toll, but it also showed the shared strength of our communities who came together and persevered through the pandemic,” acting Ulster County executive Johanna Contreras said. “This project will culminate not just in a simple monument, but a testament to hope, unity, and a lasting message for future generations.”
“Art can inspire and comfort us. Art also helps us express gratitude during difficult times,” Ulster County Legislative chair Tracey Bartels said. “The legislature joins with the executive to ask our local artists and students to share their vision for a memorial that will honor the lives lost in our communities and the heroic efforts of front-line workers who protected and served our most vulnerable residents during the pandemic.”
The commission was made up of front-line workers ranging from nurses, EMS responders and teachers, to food service, police officers and other essential workers.
Designs can be submitted by mail or in person to the office of the Ulster County executive at 244 Fair Street, Kingston NY 12401 or through the Ulster County Covid 19 website: https://codev.ulstercountyny.gov/covid-commemorate/ For information, call 845-340-3800.