2022 Volunteer Awards at Koreshan State Park
Eleven-year-old Bobby Cullen has contributed more than 150 hours of volunteer service at Koreshan State Park since July 2022. Bobby’s family served as resident volunteers in the park and he was interested in volunteering too.
He worked alongside his mother to pick up litter, perform trail maintenance and prepare campsites for new visitors. The family’s stay was during the hot Florida summer, and Bobby’s efforts were impressive and noticed by staff members and many other volunteers.
Bobby jumped right in with other volunteers to clean and install hurricane shutters, collect trash, clear trails, and remove invasive and exotic plants.
He was a strong contributor to the daily work accomplishments at the park at a time when we endured huge plant overgrowth because of the rainy season as well as hurricane damage. Bobby’s biggest accomplishment was removing exotic sansevieria by hand in our Historic Settlement.
Congratulations to Bobby. He has set the bar high for other youth volunteers.
Greg and Cathy Pauly are the recipients of the 2022 Short-Term Project of the Year for Cultural Resources.
Greg and Cathy Pauly’s skills as masons have been invaluable to Koreshan State Park’s Historic Settlement.
They have done restoration work on historic concrete stairs, sidewalks and walls, making the settlement safer and more accessible while maintaining the historical resources.
Greg and Cathy started volunteering at Koreshan State Park in 2019. Greg has volunteered about 1,200 lifetime hours and Kathy has volunteered about 900 lifetime hours.
The original entrance into the Koreshan Unity Settlement has a decorative, sloping limestone and mortar wall that greets visitors passing through the gates. This entrance is no longer used as the park entrance. Today, visitors enter the park along a side street through a modern gate. Greg and Cathy undertook a project to re-create the look of the original Koreshan entrance at this new access point on Tamiami Trail.
First, Greg and Cathy worked with the park’s museum curator and management to research the look of the original entrance. Measurements were taken to match the scale of the existing decorative stone wall. A sturdy, concrete foundation was poured, and local limestone rock, collected from the surface around the park to match the rock used to build the original, was shaped and mortared together to form the wall. Shell was mixed into the mortar to match the kind used by the Koreshans. Concrete caps were formed, and decorative ball finials were added. Finally, an ornate white picket fence was added to accentuate the wall and block the modern gate.
This project has created a beautiful park entrance with the historic feel of the original. It would not have been accomplished without the work and talents of Greg and Cathy. This new look has blended so well that it seems like it has been there for a long time.
Congratulations, Greg and Cathy. Your skills and dedication are appreciated.