W&OD Plaza to be Dedicated for Longtime Parks Supporter

March 20, 2012 10:58 PM0 comments

Longtime City of Falls Church resident Walter Mess will be honored Sunday with a plaza on W&OD Trail named in his honor.

The event, rescheduled from Oct. 29, will now coincide with the fourth annual Walter L. Mess W&OD Trail Run 5K.

Mess, a World War II veteran and Purple Heart recipient, was a pioneer in the founding of the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority, generating local and legislative support of the existing regional park system. As the second chairman, serving in that capacity for 46 years, Mess conceived and designed the W&OD Trail.

In the NVRPA’s early years, Mess, a land economist and mortgage banker, hiked each property the new agency considered acquiring. NVRPA now preserves more than 10,000 acres and operates 19 regional parks.

Several local and regional dignitaries, including City Mayor Nader Baroukh and Congressman Jim Moran, will attend the 3 pm. dedication.

The community is invited to attend the dedication of the Walter Mess Plaza at 400 N. Oak St., next to the American Legion Post in the City of Falls Church.

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