Memorial bench program to launch for Tulare County parks

Exciting things are happening with Tulare County Parks. We are thrilled to announce the launch of our Parks Sponsorship Programs, which were developed through the innovative Parks Strategic Outreach Plan. These initiatives were designed to transform our local parks into vibrant hubs of community activity and environmental stewardship.

With strong community involvement and commitment, this plan will feature an exciting lineup of sponsorship opportunities, fundraising events, clean-up initiatives, and much more.

The Strategic Outreach Plan includes:

  • Corporate Sponsorship Program
  • Individual Membership Program
  • Adopt-An-Arbor Program
  • Memorial Tree & Bench Program
  • Annual Fundraising Event
  • Volunteer Program

Tulare County Parks will kick off the program on Tuesday, September 26, 2023, at 2:00 p.m. at Mooney Grove Park across from the Museum with the first bench installation to launch the Memorial Bench Program. The dedication commemorates a long-time park supporter, George Witte, on the 11th anniversary of his passing.

After his retirement, George began walking at Mooney Grove Park daily and became friends with park staff where he chatted with them about park maintenance and preservation efforts. He viewed the park as his place of peace. Following a lengthy battle with cancer, his wife and daughter felt the best way to honor him and continue his dedication to the community was to sponsor an arbor in his name.

His family and friends often stopped by “his arbor” to think of him and reflect upon his life. “I often came to Mooney Grove to sit in George’s arbor and recall our lives together, and now I will sit on his bench and do the same. I think placing a commemorative bench is a wonderful program for our community and for our Park,” stated Carolyn Witte as she was selecting the site for George’s bench.

As the arbor sponsorship program transitioned to a more corporate-based sponsorship program, George’s family chose to honor him with the very first commemorative bench to be placed within the park. “I like to imagine Dad just sitting on his bench watching the ducks and squirrels enjoying every minute of it,” said Cara Witte-Fusinato, George’s daughter.

“Thank you to George’s family for being the first to participate in this new sponsorship program. I’m so happy to hear of all the pleasure George got from Mooney Grove Park and I look forward to other community members and organizations making an investment in our County Parks,” shared Amy Shuklian, Tulare County Supervisor, District 3.

Tulare County Parks wants to encourage the community to get involved in Parks through the investment of time and/or resources.

The complete Strategic Outreach Plan is available at

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