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Supporting Downtown Ripon

Rotary Court (Rotary Square)

This project was undertaken in 1979 in recognition of Rotary International’s 75th Anniversary, and was brought to completion in the summer of 1980. It was the most extensive and innovative project, and promised to be the most enduring local project.

Designed as a beautification project that would preserve some of the flavor of Ripon’s downtown history, the court consisted of a grassed boulevard area in the center of what was always known as “the square.” It was bordered with a hand-laid brick walkway surfaced with some of the original Watson Street paving bricks salvaged from the street renovation work earlier that year. It had decorative lighting fixtures, maple shade trees, and some sturdy park benches anchored in concrete. Nearby was one of the good old “bubbler” drinking fountains.

Rotary Court was dedicated with an outdoor ceremony on June 9, 1980, and commemorated by a cast bronze plaque mounted on a concrete block. An eye-catching sign bears the official name “Rotary Court,” which had the blessing of the city fathers.

Rotary Court is the product of the labors of every Club member --- in terms of creative ideas, professional skills, and just plain hard physical labor. Not only was the project of great value to the community, as an undertaking which involved everyone in the Club, it served as a unifying and inspiring force for the future.

As of 2006 the Rotary sign in Rotary Square needed repair, and plans are underway to replace the existing sign, possibly by placing a sign on each end of Rotary Square.

Village Green
Village Green

Rotarians have helped maintain the bandstand with fresh coats of paint, have purchased commemorative bricks (with a $1,000 contribution to a center block on the main walkway), and regularly volunteer to serve refreshments during Friday evening summer concerts.