06/26/06 — Princeton has more plans for new park

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Princeton has more plans for new park

By Turner Walston
Published in News on June 26, 2006 1:48 PM

PRINCETON -- Princeton held a grand opening Saturday for its new Ray M. Floors Community Park.

The park sits on 4.3 acres on Holts Pond Road, and features two playgrounds, a walking trail and a picnic area.

The park is named for the late Ray Floors. The owner of Floors Insurance and a Johnston County magistrate for 30 years, Floors died in 2000.

"Everyone knew how much he loved Princeton," said Floors' daughter, Lisa Floors Brown. "We wanted a way to memorialize him."

Mayor Don Rains said the creation of the park represents a big step forward for the town.

"It's a quality of life issue for Princeton. It brings Princeton to another level. As our town grows, this will be a center point to our town," Rains said.

The first acre for the park was donated in 2001. The rest of the land gradually was added.

"It's wonderful to finally see it happen," Mrs. Brown said.

Rains said it was fitting that Floors would be remembered with a park. "He never left Princeton," he said. "Everything was Princeton to him."

More than $360,000 was raised for the park from county, state and federal grants, Rains said.

Town clerk Marla Ashworth, who wrote the grants, was present for the ribbon-cutting.

"It feels really good," she said. "You're like 'Wow.' It's been a long time."

Mrs. Ashworth said seeing the park come into being made all the work worthwhile.

"You have to have the vision," she said. "It's really cool to see. In 3-D, it's just like we thought it would be. What we envisioned is what is actually here."

Rains said in coming months the walking trail will be paved, and the park will be landscaped.