Fenton in St. Louis County, Missouri — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
Meramec River Greenway - Fenton City Park
• The Meramec Greenway was established in 1975 with the mandate to plan and coordinate the recovery of 108 miles of the lower Meramec River that had deteriorated from years of abuse and neglect. The Meramec River Recreation Area (MRRA) Coordinating Committee, made up of governments with jurisdictions on the river, and citizens, was formed to lead the restoration.
• Today good water quality has been restored, the natural beauty of the river setting is recovering and over 28,000 acres of public parks and conservation areas are available for your use.
• To learn more about the Meramec Greenway, visit the Web site www.meramecgreenway.org.
• The history and meaning of the name "Meramec" are uncertain. Some historians believe the name has Native American origins. Its various interpretations include "waters of bitter springs," "waters of good fishing," "waters of ugly fish," and "waters of death." Over the years, the river has delivered on all of those meanings.
• The Meramec River provided good fishing for the nomadic Mississippian
• The other side of Ferry Street, across Gravois, is home to an underground (and bitter cold) mineral water spring. The site once housed a spring-fed community swimming pool.
• Although it served as a transportation channel, and provided life-sustaining water and food to Native Americans and American Pioneer communities, the Meramec also has proved devastating at times. Major floods, including the floods of 1915, 1927, 1937, 1938, 1945, 1982 and 1993, have ravaged the area.
• Given the river's unpredictable nature, many of the clubhouses, inns and cottages that dotted both sides of the Meramec riverbank in the early 1900s were built on stilts to stand above the floodwaters. They were constructed by an out-of-state bakery, which used them as vacation houses for its employees and friends. Fenton became recognized as a vacation destination in the early 20th century. The cottages had distinctive names such as "Pipsqueak" and "Can't Agree."
• In the 1950s, standing-room-only bus service from St. Louis ran hourly, from early morning to midnight, bringing people to the Fenton area summer cottages. Some of the houses became permanent residences in the mid-20th century. But the floods took their toll on both the
• During the Great Flood of 1993, the Mississippi River backed up along the Meramec River for many miles, flooding Larkin Williams Road and Fenton City Park for weeks. Nearly the entire 96-acre park was under water from July into September.
The City of Fenton prides itself on its park system. With 350 acres of parkland it has more park acreage per capita than any other municipality in the state. In 1986, the city unveiled its new logo, designating itself as the "City of Parks." In the early 1990s, the first Parks and Recreation Director was hired and many park development projects were launched. As the city purchased and removed clubhouses, the beginnings of paved bike paths began to be added to the sections of the linear park between Larkin Williams Road and the Meramec River. In 1991 and 1992, this 25-acre linear park was named the Fenton Meramec Greenway.
The Fenton Park system includes:
• 96-acre Fenton City Park containing many athletic fields, shelters, tennis courts, trails, and basketball
• Fabick Nature Preserve comprised of over 100 acres of open green space, nature trails and two fishing lakes
• Bud Well Park, a 22-acre park with shelters and nature trails
• Westside Park, a 10-acre park with shelter, playground, trails and fishing lake
• Local neighborhood parks: Riverside Park, Valiant Park and Olde Towne Plaza Park
• And RiverChase - the city's 72,000 square foot recreation complex containing three swimming pools, double gymnasium, indoor track, fitness center, indoor playground, party rooms, meeting rooms and more.
Fenton Heroes Memorial
• In 2005, the City of Fenton constructed the Heroes Memorial, a tribute to those who died in the attacks of September 11th, as well as to firefighters, police officers and military personnel lost in the line of duty. The memorial was built with contributions from many local businesses and individuals. It is located at the eastern end of Fenton City Park near the Larkin Williams entrance.
• This inspirational memorial originated in 2004 when Mayor Dennis Hancock challenged the Park Board to create a permanent monument to the victims of the terrorist attacks of September 11th. Design suggestions were solicited from the community, with the winning selection submitted by local architect, Charles Jahneke. Michael Lucas, member of the Park Board served as Project Manager.
• The Memorial includes:
·A granite globe that "floats" on a thin curtain of water
·A black granite wall honoring the victims of 9-11
·Two black granite pillars listing the names of area police, firefighters and military personnel lost in the line of duty
·Engraved brick pavers recognizing hundreds of "every day heroes"
• The City of Fenton wishes to thank the major donors to this project: Chrysler; Anheuser-Busch; Kadean Construction; Grant Masonry; Hallmark Stone; FabickCAT; Fenton Athletic Association; Commerce Bank; Sachs Electric; Aschinger Electric; Fenton Industrial Development Association; UniGroup, Inc.; Lawn Systems Inc.; and Marshall's Nursery and Garden Center.
Erected by City of Fenton and Great Rivers Greenway.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Disasters • Native Americans • Parks & Recreational Areas • Waterways & Vessels. A significant historical year for this entry is 1975.
Location. 38° 31.502′ N, 90° 26.216′ W. Marker is in Fenton, Missouri, in St. Louis County. Marker is on Sweany Drive east of Larkin Williams Road, on the left when traveling west. Marker is located at Fenton City Park, near the south entrance. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1134 Larkin Williams Rd, Fenton MO 63026, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Fallen Heroes Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); Early Visitors (approx. ¾ mile away); Fenton (approx. ¾ mile away); The Era of Abuse Through Use (approx. ¾ mile away); Crossing the River (approx. 0.8 miles away); Meramec River Greenway - Winter Park (approx. 1.4 miles away); George Greenamyer (American, born 1939) (approx. 1.7 miles away); Geoffrey Krawzyck (American, born 1978) (approx. 1.7 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fenton.
Also see . . .
1. Fenton City Park. From the City of Fenton's website. Contains park information (Submitted on March 26, 2022, by Jason Voigt of Glen Carbon, Illinois.)
2. Great Rivers Greenway (George Winter Park to Unger Park). Fenton City Park lies in the middle between the two parks. (Submitted on March 26, 2022, by Jason Voigt of Glen Carbon, Illinois.)
Credits. This page was last revised on March 26, 2022. It was originally submitted on March 26, 2022, by Jason Voigt of Glen Carbon, Illinois. This page has been viewed 166 times since then and 35 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on March 26, 2022, by Jason Voigt of Glen Carbon, Illinois.