Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Julia Davis Park Adds New Legacy for Davis Family, Idaho Agriculture

Posted By on Tue, Oct 30, 2012 at 4:19 PM

The new Julia Davis Agriculture Pavilion includes stones etched with representatives of Idahos ag industry.
  • Andrew Crisp
  • The new Julia Davis Agriculture Pavilion includes stones etched with representatives of Idaho's ag industry.

A new pavilion, dedicated Tuesday afternoon in Boise's Julia Davis Park, looks to help tell the history of Idaho agriculture.

Diane Myklegard Davis, great-granddaughter of the 105-year-old park's namesake, said the new pavilion she helped create tells a story of Idaho's agriculture.

"Tom [Davis] brought agriculture to Boise, and my family is still in agriculture," she said. "It's really a big part of our lives."

With 44 engraved stones representing the Gem State's counties, the Julia Davis Agriculture Pavilion is comprised of a circular plaza etched with the brands of Idaho ranchers, including Lt. Gov. Brad Little, the seals of Idaho's commodity commissions and other donors.

"Agriculture is so important to our state, our city and our valley," said Boise Mayor Dave Bieter, in attendance at the pavilion's dedication. "You really can't overstate that. It's so fitting that in our capital city, in this spot, that can be celebrated."

The facility, including a pavilion, bathroom facility and the plaza, cost around $330,00 in total, according to Boise Parks and Recreation. Much of those funds were raised by donations from across the state.

"Teton County, for example, reads, 'Most irrigation water in Idaho is from snow,'" said fundraising director Kendra Waitley. "That's probably not going to change from year to year."

The Davis' sole surviving grandchild, a 97-year-old man also named Tom, joined his wife, Jemima, to help dedicate the pavilion.

"I'm very proud of my grandparents," he said. "And I'm very proud of the city and what they've done with it."

In 1907, Tom Davis donated more than 40 acres to the city in memory of his late wife, Julia. The Agriculture Pavilion is part of Julia Davis Park: The Second Century, a plan to continue to tell the story of agriculture throughout the park.

A closeup of the etched stones with comprise the agriculture plaza.

Mayor Dave Bieter, left, confers with Julia Davis last living grandchild, Tom Davis.
  • Andrew Crisp
  • Mayor Dave Bieter, left, confers with Julia Davis' last living grandchild, Tom Davis.

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