How It All Began
The recipient of the 2016 Carver Heritage Preservation Award was St. Nicholas Catholic Church located at 412 Fourth Street West in downtown Carver. The award is given annually for the year’s best preservation work in the Carver Historic District, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
St. Nicholas was originally constructed in 1868 under the direction of Father Magnus Mayr in a rural European Gothic Revival style with a trace of Greek Revival elements. It features gothic arched windows and a three-story shingled bell tower. Inside, the altar area occupies a half-octagonal extension to the east, and stained glass windows surround the church.
During November and December 2015, nominations were solicited from the citizens of Carver. At the December meeting of the Carver Heritage Preservation Commission, nominations were reviewed and the Commission selected the year’s best preservation work or contribution to the Carver Historic District. The award was then presented by the Mayor and City Council at the January 3, 2017, regular City Council Meeting. Tony Lotzer (Trustee) and Jodee Korkowski (Business Administrator) accepted the award on behalf of St. Nicholas Catholic Church.
St. Nicholas’ restoration projects included: replacing the aging roof with architectural shingles, cleaning the exterior brick, and tuckpointing the brickwork with appropriate and color correct mortar. Interior work was also completed that involved: replacing failing roof trusses, plastering, repainting, woodworking, and reframing the ornate stained glass windows. At this time a large landscaped prayer garden was also added northeast of the church. The St. Nicholas Church Board and parishioners moved forward at great cost and effort to complete these projects that have added to the beauty of the church and the Carver Historic District.
We are grateful to the City of Carver and the Carver Heritage Preservation Commission for this honor and recognition of the work that we did to restore and maintain our facilities. The award is on display in the front of the church along with our Honor Award from the Preservation Alliance of Minnesota. The sign near the driveway will be with us until the end of 2017 and will then travel to next year’s winner of the Preservation Award.
A Continual Work in Progress
The Prayer Garden is a place for all moments in one’s life. One will come to this place with a heart full of joy, one may come to this place when one’s heart is heavy, and Mary our Mother will always be waiting for us with both of her arms outstretched.
Today we stand united with pride in what we have accomplished together so far. From the conceptualization of the Prayer Garden to the Grand Opening there have been many steps to bring it to fruition. We thank all the designers, planners, volunteers, workers and others that helped with the many details. For instance, the custom made statues of Our Lady of Guadalupe and Juan Diego were modeled and designed by a sculptor here in the metro area; placing the statues in the stone nitches/arches, design and illumination installation of the areas, the building of the encasements, moving large rocks and creating the waterfall for the Resurrection Chapel, plus so much more.
As the Prayer Garden is always changing; we would love to hear your input on what you would like to see. Additionally, we rely on each and every one of you to make the St. Nicholas Prayer Garden is known and loved. Please continue to support the Prayer Garden financially by contributing to Friends of St. Nicholas. Your continual support will not only help us complete the project but also maintain this holy place for years to come.