Letter to the Editor: Longevity Bench Project and Supporting MBTS 375th


To the Editor,

I am writing, on behalf of the Longevity Bench Project, to express sincere thanks for publishing the article “Making Strides with Longevity Benches” which announced exciting programs we planned to help town residents celebrate our town’s 375th anniversary.  We join the many groups having to adjust plans during the Covid-19 pandemic.

One initiative is moving forward as planned and we encourage everyone to be a part of it.  The Project has designated a special location, with the town’s approval, to place a commemorative bench in honor of Manchester’s 375th Anniversary.  This bench will be located near the Pine Street trail head for Powder House Hill.  Jeffreys Creek Land Contractors has already installed the concrete pad in anticipation of a ceremonial installation, when the bench is placed.  We are hoping that generous donors will support this bench for themselves and the many walkers who will use this bench to take a rest along their way. It is carefully placed just a block from one of Manchester’s prominent neighborhoods for elderly residents, Newport Park, as a destination for a short walk or a stop on a stroll to town.  The exercise and social benefits encouraged by this bench will be immeasurable as a place to safely enjoy nature.  We ask everyone to send a fully deductible donation to us at PO Box 145, MPTS.

Second, we are partnering with the Council on Aging to create the “Bench Buddies” program.  The idea for Bench Buddies is to match up walkers who are looking for a friend with whom to enjoy a walk.  We know there are people who would like to walk but would prefer a “buddy” to walk with. In this period of social distancing we can work on organizing the program but will have to hold off on implementing it.  We do invite you to contact us or the Council on Aging to express your interest, ask questions, or add your own related ideas.

Third, a community-based event we were planning for next month must be postponed. The “Bench-to- Bench Walk for Longevity” has been rescheduled for Saturday, October 10. It will be held at Legion Hall, as originally planned, and we hope that many people of all ages and abilities will join us as we walk to visit the many benches already in place.  There is a map of their locations on our website.  The October Bench-to-Bench Walk will feature the new 375th Anniversary bench and will also provide an opportunity to sign up to join the Bench Buddies  program.

With appreciation to all who have brought this project so far,

Lisa Bonneville


The Longevity Bench Project

lisa bonneville, pine street trail head for powder house hill, legion hall, town residents celebrate our town’s 375th anniversary, council on aging, powder house hill