More than 140 acres of unspoiled farmland have been donated to the town of Leesburg for use as a park, thus ensuring a pastoral entrance to the town from the north and making "a dream come true" for city officials who have long wanted such a park.
Leesburg businessman William Rust offered the land to the town at last week's council meeting on condition that the park be named after his grandmother, Ida Lee; that no roads bisect the land, and that it never be developed. According to deputy town manager Stephen Owens, Rust will also pay for a topographic map of the parcel and the services of a professional landscape planner who will work with staff to design the park. An old house on the land will be renovated and made to fit into the park's design, Owens said. "We are delighted; this is just what we've been looking for. People have donated bits of land here and there but nobody ever gave us this much before," he said. The park, which will be large enough to be both an active and a passive facility, will be located near Morven Park, an equestrian facility at the northwestern end of Leesburg.
In other business the town council heard an inquiry that could put houses worth as much as $500,000 inside Leesburg's town limits for the first time. According to planning director Martha Semmes, the inquiry calls for 64 such homes on a 100-acre parcel called Fort Beauregard at Leesburg's southeast end. The developer, Leesburg businessman Bruce Brownell, said that most of the area's trees would be preserved during construction.
The Leesburg Volunteer Fire Department's annual carnival will continue through Saturday near the Leesburg Shopping Center at the K mart parking lot. At midnight Saturday a drawing, part of the department's fund-raising efforts, will be held for a jeep. There will be no fireworks this year, a spokesman said.
Professional and amateur artists will display their paintings in all media, prints and drawing in a sidewalk art show at the iron fence surrounding the country courthouse in Leesburg on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Judging for first, second and third place awards as well as honorable mentions will begin at 11 a.m. Interested artists should call Marilynn Ottman at 777-8668. Entry fee is $1. The art show is sponsored by the Loudoun Chapter of the Virginia Museum.