The Santa Clarita City Council voted Tuesday to change the name River Village Park to “Duane R. Harte Park at River Village” in honor of the late chair of the city’s Parks, Recreation and Community Services Commission.
Harte died of a heart attack last fall at age 68.
Mayor Bob Kellar, who brought the proposal forward, called Harte the “Heart of Santa Clarita.”
“He was so involved with this community in so many areas,” Kellar said. “To say ‘deserving,’ I think, is an understatement.”
Harte and wife Pauline moved to River Village from the Happy Valley district of Newhall two years ago. The park sits roughly a block from their home.
Pauline and Duane Harte
Duane Harte was also president of the River Village Homeowners Association. In a letter to the City Council, the current president expressed support for renaming the park.
“When you talk about a parks commissioner, what’s more appropriate than a park?” Kellar asked when the council was deciding how to honor Harte.
“I just don’t know anyone else in the community who spent so many hours volunteering for so many things,” said Councilman TimBen Boydston.
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Duane Harte was a great man. This comment is not about Duane Harte or his legacy but it’s about renaming parks. Our park names are about where a park is and that areas identity. It makes it easy for city residents to quickly identify and locate a park. Do we really want to continue replacing our park names with a person names. Should we replace the name Central Park, Heritage Park, Valencia Meadows Park, Circle J Ranch Park, Bridgeport Park, Fair Oaks Park, Newhall Park, Northbridge Park, etc. with an individuals name? I say no and would hope instead we can rename a street or building after this great man and others in the future but but do not change our park names.
That’s pretty darn cool and more than well-deserved.
Duane is most deserving of this honor.
Duane is so deserving of this honor!
Wonderful tribute to a man I truly respected. Thank you council.
What a kind and generous gesture for a kind and generous man! Love it!