Fife to seek nominations for new names on memorial fountain

City to start collecting submissions in June

Staff writerMay 23, 2014 

People who have had a hand in shaping Fife’s history will soon have their names recorded in Fife’s history, thanks to a new program through the city’s parks department. 

The city announced the Fife Memorial Fountain Enshrinement Program this week, inviting nominations of individuals who deserve recognition on the city’s iconic Memorial Fountain.

The fixture was built in 1914, well before Fife incorporated as a city in 1957. The fountain holds a plaque that lists the names of community leaders, including the late Joe Vraves, one of the city’s founders.

Starting in June, anyone can submit names of individuals they think should be added to the list of notable figures. Neither the nominee, nor the person doing the nominating, is required to have lived in Fife.

Enshrinement will be awarded to those who showed faithful service, exemplary action and good deeds in the city, which today has about 9,200 residents. Nominees must have been dead at least one year from the date of application.

The Fife Memorial Fountain once had a trough, originally serving as a watering station for horses. It used to be located at what is now the intersection of 54th Avenue East and 20th Street East. It was moved to its current location in front of the city’s swim center in 1984.  

In 2001, the city built the Fountain Memorial Park near the fountain’s original location. The park was opened in place of a civic square project that was canceled in 1999, and it helps tie together Fife’s civic buildings.

City Manager Dave Zabell said the fountain will be moved once more, to near its original location. An event commemorating the fountain’s centennial is tentatively scheduled for the fall.

Zabell said the city is still working out how it will display the new names without overcrowding the fountain. Plans won’t be finalized until after the individuals are selected.

“This fountain is going to be a fixture in Fife over the next 100 years,” he said Friday. “They’re trying to develop a system to respectfully honor the names.”

The parks department’s citizen advisory board will review the names of memorial nominees and issue a recommendation to the Fife City Council for approval.

Kari Plog: 253-597-8682
Follow Kari on Twitter: @KariPlog

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