WARWICK — In an effort to preserve Warwick history and enrich our community, the Chosun Taekwondo Academy Leadership Team recently refurbished the grounds surrounding the gazebo in the Warwick Town Park that was erected as a shrine built in tribute to the late taijiquan master, Jou Tsung Hwa.
Founder of the world-renowned Tai Chi Farm, located for many years on Route 94 in Warwick, Master Jou permitted Chosun students to utilize his 110-acre training facility during the school’s infancy. He died in an automobile accident in 1998.
His disciples constructed the gazebo to preserve his legacy.
‘It is my hope …’
It has been a tradition each spring for the Chosun Leadership Team members to collect a variety of shrubs and flowers donated by local nurseries and plant them in the space surrounding the structure.
Team members then maintain the planting throughout the summer months.
A marble bench next to the wooden gazebo is engraved with the words of the enigmatic Master Jou: “It has long been my dream that one day Americans of all ages, creeds, and colors, will be practicing taijiquan in the parks of this nation as they do in China. The result would be a tremendous improvement in mental health and physical well-being. It is my hope that we can work together to revive taijiquan which is fast becoming a lost art. “
More than 15 years ago, Master Doug Cook of the Chosun Taekwondo Academy, located at 60 Galloway Road in Warwick, created the Chosun Leadership Team as an elite entity within his school.
Composed of enthusiastic youngsters and a staff of dedicated adults, the mission of the team is to provide support for their community through outreach and service, using the virtues of traditional taekwondo as a vehicle.
The Chosun Taekwondo Academy Leadership Team is perhaps best known for the Chosun annual Book and Bake Sale, a fund raiser hosted every September outdoors on the lawn of Lewis Park and attended by hundreds of people.
The event raises thousands of dollars that is then divided between the Warwick Historical Society, Rotary International and Lions Club International in support of their Holiday Party for Underprivileged Children.
Some of the other local organizations that have been recipients of the team’s actions include the Brian Ahearn Children’s Fund, the Warwick Ambulance Corps, the Warwick Historical Society, the Warwick Humane Society, the Warwick Community Kitchen and the Albert Wisner Public Library.