The city of Arcadia, population about 2400, is surrounded by farmland in the rolling hills and valleys of southern Trempealeau County.
In 1989, the town purchased 54 acres of land for a park, which now includes an aquatic center, tennis and volleyball courts, picnic areas, a large wooden playground, an outdoor amphitheater, a pavilion for indoor gatherings, and a facility with equipment for cooking 1800 pieces of barbequed chicken at the same time! (That comes in handy on Memorial Day weekend when the community hosts its annual Arcadia Broiler Dairy Days festival in the park.)
The centerpiece of Memorial Park is its tribute to American statesmen and members of the armed forces who have served our country in
times of war.
The first part of the memorial, the rotunda, covers the period in our nation's history prior to the founding of Arcadia. Among its features are statues of George Washington and Andrew Jackson, and of soldiers who served in the War of 1812 and the Mexican War.
Beyond the rotunda is "The Avenue of Heroes". This 500-meter-long walkway is a timeline from the past into the future. It begins in 1854, the year the first pioneer settlers arrived here and put down roots. Each meter thereafter represents one year in time.
Plaques embedded in the walk mark events in the town's history, such as its
first school (1857), first post office (1858), and the establishment of its fire department in 1891.
On either side of the walk, monuments and statues represent the wars in which U.S. forces have served during the course of the timeline.
Each flower bed in the walk is as long, in meters, as the duration in years of its corresponding war.