MACHESNEY PARK - Village officials have dedicated the Schoonmaker Park Pavilion to Bill Burkman, a proud graduate of Harlem Consolidated High School, class of 1924.
It is now the William R. Burkman Pavilion.
Burkman died last year at the age of 107 years,
He became president of the Harlem Alumni Association in 1994. He also was one of six original alumni to form the Harlemites, a group of approximately 200 Harlem alumni who met for monthly breakfasts and fellowship.
He also was known for cheering on the Cubs for over 75 years.
Machesney Park Trustee Aaron Wilson attended the dedication ceremony. Before Burkman’s death, they spoke frequently. Wilson said that they frequently talked about Harlem’s history.
“It was something that was always special to me to hear his stories,” Wilson said.
Burkman apparently always ended his stories by saying “Isn’t that something?”
Wilson figures that’s what he would have said at the conclusion of the dedication ceremony: “Isn’t that something?”