New Florence Petersen Park honours pioneer's contribution to Whistler 

Official opening Comes one year after museum founder's passing

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It's been one year since Whistler's beloved historian Florence Petersen died, but her name now lives on.

The Florence Petersen Park officially opened on Wednesday Aug. 28, a lasting tribute to the lady who dedicated tireless hours and energy to preserving Whistler's past.

The opening was presided over by Mayor Nancy Wilhelm-Morden.

The $65,000 park project was a special assignment for many on the ground.

"Several people working on the park were lucky to have known Florence, including two that had her as a marriage commissioner," said Kevin McFarland, parks planner with the Resort Municipality of Whistler. "It is a unique experience to work on a park that honours her."

Petersen was the founder of the Whistler Museum. She passed away in her home on Aug. 28, 2012. She was 83 years old.

The park dedicated in her honour sits adjacent to the museum.

Once an untamed, small, forested patch in the village, the park is now a place with picnic tables, walkways and a groomed lawn.

An original Red Chair from Whistler's first chairlift has also been installed.

The park budget was $65,000 but the final cost won't be confirmed until municipal labour costs are posted this month.

There will likely be a budget request in 2014 to improve integration with the adjacent forest site (formerly known as Village Park Centre).

— Alison Taylor

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