JUDITH GAP — A 122-foot-long wind turbine damaged during the construction of a wind farm near here is the centerpiece of a community park that will eventually include interpretive signs and a walking path.
The 7-ton blade was donated by Invenergy LLC, which owns and operates 90 wind turbines near Judith Gap.
Access to the wind farm is limited, so the blade gives people an opportunity to learn more about the project.
"We get a lot of people who come in and want tours," said John Bacon, on-site manager for Invenergy.
"Now I can send people to Judith Gap to look at a blade. Seeing that, they really can get a better feel for the size of these things."
Susan Miller and several other residents are working to build the park.
They also plan to plant trees and shrubs and install a sprinkler system.
"This was a community revitalization effort," Miller said.
Much of the project was funded by a $10,000 Bair grant. Other grants and donations, along with donated work, are helping, as well.
Miller said up to two dozen people a day stop to see the blade.
"We've noticed people stopping to look," said Tim Mauws, co-owner of the Carroll Trail Inn.
"And I think we actually get a lot of those people stopping here at the cafe and the store."