If you’ve ever driven on Chapman past the Old Town Orange Depot and Veteran’s Memorial at Depot Park, you may have noticed a tall ornate clock on a tall poll installed on the sidewalk. Further inspection would have shown the clock to be missing its hands, which are essential to telling time. You may have wondered just what this clock was, and why it wasn’t actually functioning.
Wonder no more.
Back in the days of “Millennium Madness,” when everyone was sure that computers could not count to 2000, Orange decided to commemorate the turn of the Century with a special clock. The Millennial Clock at the Veterans Memorial at Depot Park was installed to great fanfare in October 2000, just one month before the dedication of the newly built Veterans Memorial Fountain.
Unfortunately, maintenance issues, and the scarce availability of both parts and skilled repairmen, meant that the clock would soon become inoperable. Due to the onset of the 2007 recession, the resources to repair the clock were redirected to other uses.
Last fall, the Clock reawakened from its long slumber. An entirely new, more technologically advanced mechanism was installed to replace the original clockworks. New faces were installed, and the Clock received a fresh repaint meant to accentuate its lines and features.
The Millennial Clock is once again attractive and functional, helping to keep visitors to Depot Park and commuters on Chapman Ave. on time.