By Liz Premo, Atlantic News Staff Writer
Atlantic News, Friday, December 17, 2004
[Atlantic News Photos by Liz Premo]
HAMPTON | Leaking ceilings and mushrooms growing on the damp carpet will no longer plague Hampton Police Chief Bill Wrenn, now that the town's brand new police station is ready for business.
Chief Wrenn made that observation during the official ribbon cutting ceremony held on the steps of the new facility on Monday evening of this week.
A good-sized crowd of people gathered for the event, which included the unveiling of a dedication plaque, the raising of the United States and New Hampshire flags, and tours of the well-lit, spacious building.
"The community can be proud of this building," said Chief Wrenn, addressing a group that included police personnel, town and state officials, department heads, Hampton Area Chamber of Commerce staffers, and members of the general public.
"You deserve it, and your town deserves it," Hampton Selectman Chairman William "Skip" Sullivan told Wrenn.
During his remarks, Hampton Town Manager James Barrington revealed that when he first came to Hampton a number of years ago, Chief Wrenn invited him "to come visit the police station." Taking a quick glance around and making a gesture toward the structure behind him, Barrington announced, "I finally made it!"
Barrington went on to share a story of how Clerk of the Works Dick Violette once observed that it was sheer luck that the project's progress was fairly unaffected by any inclement weather. Violette, said Barrington, was corrected by Hampton Police Department Chaplain Father Moe, who said "No, this is faith."
Concluding his remarks, Barrington agreed with the latter observation, noting that "This is a work of faith" — one built for "police officers who will enjoy it for the next 100 years."
The proceedings were acknowledged by a generous round of applause — and one onlooker humorously wondering if donuts were going to be served.
Chief Wrenn took time to acknowledge a number of people who were responsible for making the new police station a reality, including Michael Whitcher (building contractor); Dick Violette (clerk of the works); Jeffery McElravy (architect with Kaestle Boos Associates, Inc.); and those individuals who supported the building project from its inception.
After the unveiling of the plaque and before tours of the building began, Chief Wrenn — who smiled broadly throughout the event — noted that there will likely be a public open house taking place sometime in April or May.