Community support for a project that will replace benches in the Palmerton Borough Park remains at a feverish rate.

To date, 109 benches have been sponsored by local businesses and residents of the Palmerton area through the Palmerton Concourse Club Bench Project.

The new benches will be colored red, and will replace 70 green benches currently in the borough park, said Christine Campbell, president of the club/project leader.

"These benches will replace the existing benches in the borough park and then some," Campbell said. "We had an overwhelming response from the community, so now we will have a total of 109 sponsored benches."

Each bench has five boards, which means 545 boards need two coats of paints before they can even be assembled, she said.

The Friends of Benches subcommittee decided to make the benches red to match the sign that welcomes visitors to town at the start of Delaware Avenue, Campbell said.

She said Palmerton Lumber has provided supplies, the pre-drilling, and delivery of the 545 boards needed for the benches, along with the hardware and concrete ends.

Also, Campbell said Sheas Hardware has supplied the group with not only the paint, rollers and other items needed for the project, but also with their expert advice.

In addition, the brass plaques that will be mounted on each bench and note the designated sponsor have also been supplied by Sheas, Campbell said.

She said groups such as the Boys Scouts, Friends of the Library, and the Friends of the Park subcommittee have expressed an interest in painting the benches.

The official Community Day to assemble the benches in the park has been pushed back to June 5, Campbell said. Initially, she said the work was to have been done on May 8, but can't due to a scheduling conflict in the park.

Anyone who would like to help assemble the benches, of with any questions about the project, may contact Campbell at 610-379-1202.

Campbell said a special dedication ceremony will be held sometime in August.

Formed in the borough on Jan. 21, 1915, the Concourse Club was established to promote interest in education, social, welfare, moral values, governmental affairs, and fine arts.

From its modest beginnings as a member of the General Federation of Women's Clubs, the Concourse Club has become one of the largest community service organizations in Carbon County, with about 120 active members.

Since its inception, the group has placed an emphasis on health and children's projects, and has provided significant support to the Palmerton Area Library, the Palmerton Wheels "Books for Babies" to encourage reading to children, and Operation Smile, to provide corrective surgery for children suffering from severe facial deformities.

Along with its social and educational programs, the Concourse Club has been instrumental in maintaining the quality and character of the borough park.

The group restored the bandstand, and provided the financial support for walkways improvements, new lighting, and free replacement in the park as well.