New playground equipment. Source: Whirlix.

Patterson Park Playground is Expanding

By Jennifer Potter-Miller
Originally published in the August 2018 issue of The Flea

Friends of Patterson Park (FoPP) received a $50,000 ACL Music Festival Community Grant from the Austin Parks Foundation in June, which will support the construction of new playground equipment and park seating—addressing playground improvements, the number-one goal in our Neighborhood Park Plan.

The project, a collaboration with Austin Department of Parks and Recreation, Urban Patchwork, and Landscape Structures, includes a circular monkey bar and two spinners. New benches will be placed under the park’s oak trees, and small boulders will be grouped to form natural play elements and extra seating. Matching funds raised by the neighboring community during Amplify Austin will be instrumental in executing the improvements. FoPP is tremendously grateful to all the neighbors and neighborhood businesses who have supported its fundraising!

FoPP’s grant application to the City of Austin’s Neighborhood Partnering Program is currently under consideration. This grant would allow for updating park furnishings and making trail improvements.

In June, Patterson Park held a screening of How to Train Your Dragon, part of the Movies in the Park series hosted by Austin Parks Foundation, Alamo Drafthouse, and other sponsors. More than 250 people enjoyed the charming animated movie and food trucks on the lawn. Upcoming events include an End of Summer Pool Party (Aug. 18), National Night Out (Oct. 2), It’s My Park Day (Nov. 3) and CherryWoodstock (Nov. 10).

FoPP plans to wrap up the installation of the playground addition at It’s My Park Day 2018, and would love the help of all park lovers! To get involved, follow FoPP on Facebook or email fopp.atx@gmail.com.

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End of Summer Pool Party

The 2018 summer swim season wraps up on Saturday, August 18, and Friends of Patterson Park is hosting a pool party!

Saturday, August 18, 3-5 p.m.
End of Summer Pool Party

We’ve loved spending so many summer days hanging out with friends and neighbors at Patterson pool, and want to say goodbye with a splash. Join us on the last day of the summer swim season and we’ll have ice cream sandwiches to share.
We’re also celebrating our grant from the Austin Parks Foundation for playground improvements. The new play equipment will be installed later this fall, and we are so grateful for the funding!
Patterson Park playground addition

Playground Addition Grant Submitted

This week Friends of Patterson Park submitted an application to Austin Parks Foundation for an ACL Music Festival Community Grant to fund the playground addition project we developed over the last year.  The project includes 1) new playground equipment (circular monkey bars and spinners next to the current playground), 2) additional benches (under the shade of the oak trees),  3) boulders and stumps for natural play and seating (in front of the bathrooms), and 4) a line of stepping stones (under the trees next to the toddler playground). The addition was approved in October, and the surrounding neighborhoods voted in favor of it at the same time they voted to support our Neighborhood Park Plan.

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playground addition site panoramic.sm

Site for proposed playground addition.

The playground addition addresses the first priority identified in the 2016 Survey of Community Priorities for Patterson Park, improvements to the playground. Potential projects were identified as new play equipment, additional seating, and natural play opportunities. The full set of community priorities is the following:

1. Playground improvements
2. Pool improvements
3. Bathroom improvements
4. Amenities/furnishings
5. Trail improvements
6. Tree plantings
7. Shade Structures
8. Athletic field/court improvements
9. Skate ramp improvements
10. Lighting
11. Fitness Equipment
12. Other

IMPD Sp2018 Patterson-

Another Great It’s My Park Day at Patterson!

We had another great It’s My Park Day on Saturday, with almost 40 volunteers working to mulch the large oak trees around the playground. It was a beautiful morning and we were thrilled to have the Assistant Director of PARD, Director of Development at Austin Parks Foundations, and a forester with Texas A&M Forest Service join us.

Forester Brad Hamel gave a great short presentation on how mulch works like a cushion to protect the root system in high traffic areas like where we were working, and the value of clearing root collars of the soil that accumulates over the years, stressing the trees.
Thanks to everyone who came out to lend a hand, to Austin Parks Foundation for organizing the city-wide volunteer day, and to Thunderbird for the great coffee! If you’d like to help plant trees this Saturday, please sign up here: https://givepul.se/55jph.

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Photos by J. Potter-Miller

Friends of Patterson Park community meeting January 20, 2018.

Notes: FoPP Community Meeting Jan. 20

Twelve Friends of Patterson Park met at the playground on January 20 to review plans for spring projects.  The major topics were 1) the tree planting planned for March 10, 2) grant application for playground improvements due April 30, and 3) spring fundraising. There was a great discussion with several issues resolved and we enjoyed dinner together at the pavilion afterward.

Tree Planting

Guest speakers Bill Stout (Austin Parks Foundation) and Suzannah DesRoches (TreeFolks) spoke about the location of the new grove of trees to be planted in March, and led a discussion of how to organize a “Patterson Tree Huggers” watering crew, what it would involve, and ways to offer an “adopt-a-tree” marker for families participating in the crew as an incentive. The decision was made to use Treegator watering bags to maximize ease of watering and efficient soaking, and to search for markers that can be attached to tree branches identifying the species and recognizing a tree adopter.

The area where the grove will be planted is just west and north of the playground. Bill has worked out a plan with PARD where they will use their equipment to clear the bermuda grass and dig post holes prior to planting day. Austin Resource Recovery will donate cardboard, and APF will donate mulch, so that on March 10 volunteers will plant the trees, and cover the entire area with cardboard and mulch to suppress grass. This will allow mowing crews to stay clear of the young trees.

The list of trees included in the planned grove is Burr Oak, Monterrey Oak, Flameleaf Sumac, Goldenball Lead, Texas Kidneywood, Mexican Plum, Texas Persimmon, Red Bud, Desert Willow, Anacacho Orchid. TreeFolks plans to procure them from the Barton Springs Nursery.

Playground Improvements

FoPP has worked with PARD to identify circular monkey bars and spinners as equipment that will 1) fit in this area 2) meet need for new equipment focused on strength and balance, and 3) be durable. The preferred vendor is Landscape Structures. Paige Oliverio Hill (Urban Patchwork) presented her design for seating around the area where the playground addition is planned. This is immediately adjacent to the playground, on the west side. Plans also include steps down to the bathrooms, and boulders for natural play and seating in front of the bathrooms.

Spring Fundraising

Jennifer Potter-Miller, FoPP Chair, shared plans to raise funds through the Austin Parks Foundation during the Austin Marathon races (Feb. 18) and Amplify Austin (March 1-2). There will be a taco night on Feb. 20 at her house for neighbors interested in creating individual fundraising pages for Amplify.

Friends of Patterson Park illustration by Caitlin Alexander

Community Meeting Saturday, Jan. 20

Please join Friends of Patterson Park at the pavilion on Saturday, January 20 for a community meeting to discuss projects planned for 2018. We can order pizza for dinner afterward!

AGENDA

4-4:30 pm Tree planting

Guest speakers: Bill Stout, Austin Parks Foundation and Suzannah DesRoches, TreeFolks

Finalize project plans, including location of new grove, selection of tree species, and watering commitment. Planting is scheduled for March 10, and planting prep will take place on It’s My Park Day, March 3.

4:30-5 pm Playground addition

Guest speaker: Paige Oliverio Hill, Urban Patchwork

Review plans for installation of circular monkey bars, spinners, and seating,

5-5:30 pm Upcoming fundraisers and discussion of small project/phased addition of park furnishings

Speaker: Jennifer Potter-Miller, FoPP

In search of neighbors to fundraise for Friends of Patterson Park during the Austin Marathon races (Feb. 18) and Amplify Austin (Mar. 1-2). Also, should we consider a small project this spring as playground addition would not be implemented until fall?

proposed Patterson Park playground addition

 

It’s My Park Day at Patterson Nov. 4

Join Friends of Patterson Park on Saturday, November 4th for It’s My Park Day! Meet at 9am at the playground for a family work day. We will be mulching the heritage oak trees surrounding the playground to help keep them healthy and providing much needed shade for years to come.

This is an opportunity for the folks of all ages to volunteer, and we will have kids sized shovels, gloves and mulch sleds. If you have wheelbarrows or wagons, please bring them! We’ll have shovels, gloves, and mulch sleds.

We will have coffee, lemonade, tacos, and muffins to fuel our volunteers. Please register at https://www.givepulse.com/event/58508 to get your t-shirt and sign the necessary waiver! Thank you to the Austin Parks Foundation for organizing this city-wide work day at Austin’s parks. We’ve accomplished so much at volunteer work days over the last several years and always have a great time!

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Photo credit: J. Potter-Miller/FoPP. See more on Flickr.

Patterson Park playground addition

Playground Addition and Tree Planting Projects Approved by FoPP

Friends of Patterson Park voted by a strong majority to support the proposed playground addition, and unanimously to support the tree planting proposal. The poll was held online October 9-11, and 37 members participated. The final tally was 35 in favor of the playground addition and 2 against, and 37 in favor of the tree planting.

The next steps for the playground addition will be to apply for an Austin Parks Foundation ACL Music Festival Grant. The next step for the tree planting is to inform TreeFolks and APF, so that they can submit a tree order to their nursery this month and schedule a planting day in December or January.

Next steps on the Neighborhood Park Plan are to present it to the surrounding neighborhood associations for review and a vote. The schedule to date is the following:

Mueller NA, Oct. 21
Delwood 2 NA, Nov. 5
Cherrywood NA, Nov. 18
Schieffer-Willowbrook NA, TBC November
Wilshire Wood NA TBC January

Patterson Park playground addition

 

Patterson Playground repairs 2017

Playground Work Nears Completion

The Patterson Park playground remains closed, but the crew from Parks and Recreation is making great progress and may be done by the end of the week. The half of the playground with equipment for toddlers is finished, with fresh mulch laid over a weed barrier and rocks for drainage. The main part of the playground is prepped and ready for mulch. We look forward to the reopening of our neighborhood park’s playground soon!

Patterson playground closing

Patterson Playground Closing for Repairs

The City of Austin Parks and Recreation Department is closing the Patterson Playground for repairs on Monday, March 27.  The pour-in-place rubberized flooring has suffered extensive damage over the years is beyond the point of repair. The plan is to remove the pebbles and flooring, demo the concrete base, and replace with the mulch now standard in city parks. Work is expected to take 3-4 weeks. PARD has already done extensive work at Patterson over the last month, and this playground improvement will be tremendously beneficial to park users.

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Photos by Jennifer Potter-Miller

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