It was a joy and an honor for us at the Olympia Tumwater Foundation to be a part of a special re-dedication ceremony on Friday, September 8, of the restored Tivoli Fountain at the State Capitol Campus. This centerpiece of the campus was originally donated, built and installed through the work of the Schmidt family and the Olympia Tumwater Foundation in 1953. At the first dedication, Peter G. Schmidt presented this first project of the foundation to Governor Arthur Langlie at the very same site where Governor Jay Inslee and Foundation President Lee Wojnar re-enacted the scene.
It was a special treat to see in attendance some of the descendants of the Schmidt family: Katie Hurley, Arel Solie, Peter G. Schmidt Jr.’s granddaughter Jeanne Phinney (with her husband) and their two young children, youngest Schmidt descendants in attendance, Dylan and Lauren. Governor Inslee paid special honor to the youngsters during the celebration.
The celebration ceremony included talks by the Public History Manager of the foundation, Don Trosper, Mayor Cheryl Selby of the City of Olympia, Mayor Pro Tem Neil McClanahan of the City of Tumwater and a keynote re-dedication speech by Governor Inslee. After the photos were taken at the fountain with the governor, the gathered crowd enjoyed the fountain history display put together by the Schmidt House curator Karen Johnson and assistant Megan Ockerman. Foundation Executive Director John Freedman met with Governor Inslee and commented that community service has been an integral part of the Schmidt family culture of philanthropy begun in 1896 by Leopold Schmidt and passed down from generation to generation and continues through the work of the Olympia Tumwater Foundation today.