Althea Grover, far left, holds a microphone for children at a dedication ceremony of Glover's Corner for children and adults to sing "You Are My Sunshine". Far right is Kathy Jo Grover. Photo by Shaw Israel Izikson.

A celebration of memories and melodies at David Grover dedication

The town of Great Barrington remembered David Grover in a dedication ceremony at the town gazebo, now renamed "Grover's Corner," on Saturday. July 2. Grover was "all about loving yourself, loving the planet, and making you know that, while it is a big world, you still have a place in it."

Great Barrington — The late musician David Grover was remembered at a dedication ceremony at the town gazebo on Saturday, July 2.

Grover, 69, was a Berkshires musician who worked for decades and worked with musicians Arlo Guthrie and Pete Seeger.

In early November, he died following a car crash near Utica, New York.

At the ceremony, the gazebo, along with a portion of the town park surrounding the gazebo, was renamed Grover’s Corner.

Throughout the years, Grover had performed for audiences on the gazebo hundreds of times on Saturday mornings.

Grover’s Corner was also the name of a PBS series that was first broadcast in 1989 that aimed to teach children about music.

A sign indicating “Grover’s Corner” as the name of the gazebo next to Town Hall. The gazebo was named after the late musician David Grover, who, for many years, performed at the gazebo. Photo by Shaw Israel Izikson.

The PBS series included the 1991 special “Chanukah at Grover’s Corner,” which taught children about Chanukah traditions.

Right before the event, Grover’s widow Kathy Jo Grover spoke to The Berkshire Edge about her husband’s legacy and what he would think about the gazebo and the area surrounding it being dedicated to him.

“I think he would be humble about it,” Kathy Jo Grover said. “I mean, he would be honored. But for Dave, it was always about the kids. He would want everybody to have a good time and sing.”

And indeed, at the event, there were over 50 residents who enjoyed the concert and sang along with a band led by both Kathy Jo Grover and granddaughter Althea Grover.

“I think Dave wanted to give children what he didn’t necessarily get in his childhood,” Kathy Jo Grover said. “I think he wanted to make them feel comfortable with themselves. I think he wanted to teach them how to make a difference in the world. For Dave, it wasn’t about being rich and famous. It wasn’t about being recognized on the streets. It was about the children going home and feeling good about themselves. That’s what it was always about.”

Jay Dubner called his friend, David Grover, someone who was giving and compassionate.

Dubner helped to sell Grover’s merchandise at shows for over 20 years.

“I think it’s great for the town to be giving back to him like this, especially because he gave back to this town for over 40 years,” Dubner said. “He’d be very modest about it. He wouldn’t go ‘I don’t deserve this.’ He was just very modest. What he wanted was to make the world a better place. I think his music basically was about love and compassion, and that we should be all together. That’s what we should focus on.”

David Grover’s widow, Kathy Jo Grover, and Grover’s granddaughter Althea Grover, perform at a dedication ceremony for “Grover’s Corner” on Saturday, July 2. At the ceremony, the gazebo next to Town Hall and the land surrounding it was dedicated in the memory of musician David Grover. Photo by Shaw Israel Izikson.

At the beginning of the event, the skies were gray and it was drizzling.

Despite this, the event went ahead as planned and the band played some of his songs and some famous folk songs that he performed.

By the time the band led the audience in “You Are My Sunshine,” the sky became brighter and the drizzle stopped.

“David radiated a joy and a positivity that you can’t fake,” musician and friend Stu Yurman said. “Because if you tried to fake it, children would have busted you for it in a second. He transferred that positivity to his adult music in an amazing way. He was the true definition of a troubadour because once people heard him sing, they all fell under his spell.”

“When people think about my husband’s legacy, I think people will remember a legacy of encouraging children to be kind to one another and taking the planet,” Kathy Jo Grover said. “He was all about loving yourself, loving the planet, and making you know that, while it is a big world, you still have a place in it. He wanted people to know that, as different as we all are, we’re all the same because we all need the same things, including a little love and care.”

Watch the David Grover dedication ceremony below.