Trail Work Update — Installing Tanya’s Bench
Last Sunday, our trail workers split into two teams. One group went off to rebuild the outhouse at the Porter Family Picnic area parking lot. The other team was honored with the task of replacing a standard, State Park issued bench with a beautifully wrought, old-growth redwood bench. This bench is dedicated to the memory of the Advocates’ Trail Boss, board member and dear friend, Tanya Larson O’Donnell. Tanya died on January 17 after a sudden illness — NUT Midline Carcinoma, a rare and aggressive cancer.
From left to right in the photo, our team of bench installers includes Maureen and Bob Thrash, Nadine Nemec, Geoff Alexander, Bud O’Donnell, and Chris Angelos.
Scroll down to see photos of the project taking shape….
Geoff Alexander, The Advocates’ Chairman of the Board, (no pun intended) graciously donated the two slabs of old growth redwood and used his considerable woodworking skills to create the seat and backrest for Tanya’s bench.
The back side of the backrest is inscribed with the words, “Tanya — Trail Boss”, in honor of her considerable efforts on behalf of the park. She spent many hours in the park working on the trails, carefully tending the park she so loved.
The front of the backrest is inscribed with a phrase from a song that Tanya loved, “peaceful easy feeling”. That phrase well describes what it was like to spend time with Tanya, and it also expresses how she felt about being in the forest. Peaceful and Easy.
Nadine Nemec, a co-worker of Tanya’s, turned out to help with the install, along with Kerith, one of our State Park Maintenance workers.
Bob Thrash, Tanya’s Co-Trail-Boss, gets down and dirty to get the job done. Thanks Bob, for bringing your expertise to the project and helping us to get it done right so our community can enjoy this place of solace for years to come.
Bud O’Donnell, Tanya’s husband and the love of her life, helped with the install. Thank you, Bud!
You will find Tanya’s Bench along the Aptos Rancho Trail, just before it ends across the fire road from George’s Picnic Area. It overlooks Aptos Creek in an area of dappled sunshine, amongst the redwoods she so dearly loved.