In front of a crowd gathered across from the National Grand Bank, the Rotary Club of Marblehead unveiled a community clock in celebration of its centennial anniversary on May 11.
“In today’s world, clocks are integral to everything we do from work to school to sleep. Humans have been regulated by some form of the clock for ages,” said Nancy Gwin, the Rotary Club of Marblehead’s co-president, to the crowd surrounding the clock. “This [clock] is the perfect symbol to commemorate our Marblehead Rotary Club’s 100 years of service to our community, to the youth of Marblehead, to our international projects. We hope that these efforts continue into the next century as well.”
The community clock, standing at 10-and-a-half feet, is located next to Memorial Park along Pleasant Street.
It was manufactured by Electric Time Street Clocks, a Massachusetts company that Gwin noted for its reliable and durable timepieces. The clock, with its dual faces, can be seen from various directions and will light up at night.
Rotary Club District Governor Alexander Falk briefly addressed the crowd before reading a letter from Rotary International President Jennifer Jones.
“Since your club was chartered, you have shown a commitment to not only representing the Rotary in your community but also to significant meaningful work from which your community benefits,” Falk read from Jones’ letter. “When we join Rotary, we commit to Rotary values, friendships and a life of service above self. We should take pride in all that we’ve achieved together and the lives we will enhance in the future.”
During the ceremony, Select Board Chair Moses Grader read a proclamation, while Rotarian Gene Arnould offered a prayer.
“Our lives are governed by time. So much so that time is, indeed, a metaphor for life. We speak of good times and bad times. We speak of our time and my time,” said Arnould. “Let this clock that we dedicate today measure the hours and days of our life and mark our minutes and seconds, just as the clock at Abbot Hall has for nearly 150 years, reminding us that each hour and day is precious and can be filled however we choose.”
The design of the clock is similar to the one on the tower at Abbot Hall, specifically its face and numeral four. The clock is situated on land owned by the National Grand Bank, whose board of directors donated the space for the clock.
“As you drive by, it stands out as a focal point,” Select Board member Alexa Singer commented after the ceremony. “It all comes together in a place where people walk around and gather. It’s a great historical addition and tribute to the Rotary.”
Standing next to Singer, Select Board member Jackie Belf-Becker agreed, saying, “I think this clock is going to bring people together.”
Eldar Yahorau performed a spirited rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner,” before the unveiling concluded with people heading over to the Boston Yacht Club for lunch.