Anonymous donors make new shelter house possible

Two anonymous donors have contributed a combined $50,000 toward the construction of a new shelter house in the North Vernon City Park.

It will replace the former shelter house that was destroyed for safety reasons last March. The previous shelter house served the community for decades as the site of the farmers market and weddings, family reunions and other festive occasions.

“The park, the shelter house and the farmers market are important centers of community activities in this town,” North Vernon Mayor Mike Ochs said.

The donation will enable construction on the shelter house earlier than expected, and it should be ready for use by spring, Ochs said.

“This came out of nowhere and it just shows the kind of people we have in this community. The donors aren’t thinking of themselves, they are just trying to make it better for everyone,” Ochs said.

An unnamed attorney made the arrangements for the donations through the Jennings County United Way office.

Private fundraising efforts have been underway since the previous shelter house was destroyed, and early cost estimates to build a new shelter house were initially around $100,000.