Kelsey’s Bridge

Submitted by Condy and Wynn

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Client: Bethel United Methodist Church

Location: SPRING CITY, PA (Pennsylvania), United States

Completion date: 2012

Artwork budget: $40,000

Project Team

Landscape Architect

Linda B. Gumeney

MKW + Associates, LLC

Artist

Phil Santangelo

Pinnacle Stone Products, LLC

Artist

Joel Bless, Candace Luke-Bless

http://www.glasslightstudio.com/

Overview

Kelsey's Bridge is a functional and metaphorical community tribute to a 16 year old sweetheart who tragically died in a one car accident. The bridge spans a storm water flood area, symbolically the “Bridge” brings the community together. Such as did Kelsey Lynn Kramer, known by all who new her to reach out to the new student at school and make him or her feel welcome. The site is a 1 acre playground/picnic area near the crash site. The 19'6″ long bridge includes a handicap accessible code compliant walkway with ramps centered by a nine foot diameter gazebo.

Goals

The overall goals were to create a finely crafted, meaningful and long lasting memorial at Bethel United Methodist Church; including a garden, for multiple church and community usage, i.e. for meditation, Girl and Boy Scout use bridging ceremonies, as well as a wedding ceremony that recently took place on the bridge. Symbolism Goals were: http://www.kelseysbridge.com/bridge.php , old growth redwood reclaimed from dismantled pickling tanks; given a new life in the project symbolizing a New Life Eternal. Redwood handrail assemblies formed with stylized "K's".{making it "her own bridge"} The center is made as a circle, a reminder of the continuous circle of life and to create a feeling of surrounding and coming together. The circle symbolizes eternity as it has no beginning and no end. On top, the brass ornament with K graphics holds down a hand blown glass skylight with shades of purple, Kelsey's favorite color.The aluminum roof, with 16 panels representing the years of her life is crafted with an up and down playful movement as it lives along side an existing merry-go-round. Aesthetically, the design needed to fit with the historic "feel" of a country stone church.

Process

Collaboration took place among all team members over a year period, beginning with CondyandWynn proposing to replace a Scout positioned 10 foot plank of wood that sat on top of 2 cinder-blocks with Kelsey's Bridge. The ramps, walkways and stonework ,designed in concert with Bethel UM Church were permitted by the Township for commercial usage. Kelsey's Aunt, a landscape architect, sensitively designed the garden around existing Church usage and in collaboration with all involved, while planning for blooming plants at all times of the year and incorporating native plants that thrive in wet areas. Stonewalls, walkway and garden work by Phil Santangelo with family, friends and too many volunteers here to mention (see below) worked closely with the entire project team to achieve shared goals.

Additional Information

Enormous support from members of the surrounding community, students and adults alike. Everyone reached out and dug deep to make this project a reality. List of workers and volunteers can be found at: http://www.kelseysbridge.blogspot.com/2013/01/volunteers-for-kelseys-bridge-kelseys.html List of sponsers can be found at: http://www.kelseysbridge.blogspot.com/2013/01/kelseys-bridge-kelseys-garden-vendor.html