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Rae and Eleanore Benesch are Riverside Park Originals!

Ray and Eleonore Benesch have lived on Hobson Rd for 54 years, after Ray took a job at the National Research Council. They were attracted to a small new development near Mooney’s Bay, called Edstan Gardens, because of the proximity to good schools, recreational opportunities, and a local grocery store.

In 1970, Eleonore was recruited to be the first Director of the Riverside Park Nursery School, which was jointly sponsored by the Roman Catholic, Anglican and Riverside United Churches. The parent co-operative nursery school became an instant success, far beyond the religious communities. With the support of Dan Donnelly Ford Lincoln Car Dealership, the RPNS secured daily transportation for children from the Ledbury development and gave a head start to young families.

The Riverside Park Nursery School continues to thrive and grow and is now in the process of constructing a purpose-built Early Learning Centre at the site of the original Bayview Public School on Springland Dr.

Eleanore’s lifelong passion for accessible childcare, is only matched by the couple’s commitment to family and community.

Ray and Eleonore Benesch are true Riverside Park Originals!

This post is part of an ongoing series called: Riverside Park Originals. To profile your long-time neighbours, send a photo and a short bio to Please include the proper spelling of their names, the neighbourhood they live in, how long they have lived here, and a quote, reflection, story, or description of the resident(s). Please ensure that they have consented to the use of their photo and bio. Submissions need not be carefully edited. We will polish before we post!

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