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Fisher Park is getting a new playground!
By: Erin Stryka
Jun 14, 2018

Fisher Park Playground to Be Rebuilt: Partners Invite Neighborhood Participation in Inclusive Park Project

The public is invited to learn more at a community input event on July 7 from 9-11 a.m. at Fisher Park and to volunteer at a community build in September.

On June 1, the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) announced the Unified Government of Wyandotte County (UG) would be one of twenty-five entities across the nation to receive one of the highly competitive, $30,000 Meet Me at the Park play space grants – for which over 180 agencies applied. This program is part of NRPA and Disney’s commitment to provide 1 million kids and families with greater access to play. Additional donations have been made by other partners, increasing total resources for the park project to $60,000. These include $10,000 from the Wyandotte County Parks Foundation; $3,000 from the Neighborhoods Rising Fund; $15,000 of in-kind donations from the UG to assist with labor, landscaping, signs and seating; and additional in-kind contributions from Rosedale Development Association (RDA), which initiated the original Meet Me at the Park application project after Rosedale residents requested and invested in improvements to Fisher Park.

Fisher Park is a beloved community gathering space in the Rosedale neighborhood of Kansas City, Kansas. Located centrally within an area of mixed-income housing, Frank Rushton and Rosedale Middle Schools, and in close proximity to University of Kansas Medical Center and University of Kansas Health Systems, Fisher Park is a major asset to Rosedale. For many residents, Fisher Park is the only park that is walk or bike accessible without crossing busy — and often dangerous — roadways. RDA has already worked with the UG Parks Department, residents, and volunteers to construct a 4-mile nature trail that begins at the park; plant and care for the fruit tree orchard and native stormwater gardens; raise funds for a water fountain at the park; and advocate for a gravel walking path around its perimeter, home to the Fisher Park Walking Club. Updating the play area and resurfacing the walking path will further sustain residents’ investment in the park, while also creating a neighborhood hub that connects residents, supports active living, and encourages inclusive play/socialization.

The UG’s At Large, District One Commissioner Melissa Bynum says of the collaborative project,

More and more often, we see that when we work to improve social and economic conditions throughout our community, access to parks, quality of life and livable neighborhoods are a priority for developers and residents alike. So, this new Fisher Park playground is yet another step we collectively are taking to not only bring this important fact into focus, but to work collaboratively to achieve this objective. I’m really proud of the partnerships that came together to work on this common goal; everyone wins when parks are improved.

RDA is a nonprofit organization with a mission to work with residents, businesses and institutions to develop a thriving community.  Rosedalian Peggy Bell, who lives at the nearby Rosedale Towers and often participates in the Fisher Park Walking Club, says of RDA’s mission, “Rosedale is a better place to live than any other… a thriving Rosedale community is one in which all members engage with one another and treat each other well… [I want] to live in a place where no one has to struggle alone and where people feel safe and connected.” These Fisher Park improvements will ensure safety and a warm welcome for any resident who wishes to walk, play or harvest fruit there.

For questions or more information about the July 7 community input session, the September community build, or how to donate toward further Fisher Park improvements, contact RDA Development and Events Coordinator, Alissa Workman, at 913-677-5097 or [email protected].