The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Progress 2014

March 15, 2014

Reasons to go outside

City and advisory board work to ensure parks are beacons to locals and visitors

ENID, Okla. — Over the next few weeks, the city of Enid will finish its plan to install brand-new playground equipment in eight parks.

According to a schedule provided by the city of Enid Parks Department, pre-installation work and playground setting will start soon at North and South Meadowlake and La Mesa. By this time, installation should be finished or nearly so on Don Haskins, North Government Springs, Glenwood and Phillips Southern Heights.

In early April, the city hopes to have a hill slide installed at Meadowlake, and Champion Park will receive three concrete pads around the playground area. It will have a bench and shade structure at each pad, the schedule said.

These priorities have been helped along by the Park Board, an advisory-only citizen committee that focuses on park priorities.

Maggie Jackson and Mary McDonald are the newest members and were appointed earlier this month.

“I have been really proud of the city and the efforts they’ve made lately,” Jackson said.

Having a place to get exercise, namely the walking and running trail that crosses the city, ties nicely with Jackson’s job. She’s a health educator with the Garfield, Grant and Major county health departments.

“I just want to see Enid become the healthiest community it can be. You can only tell people so much if they can’t afford a gym or have nowhere safe to go,” she said.

Jackson has lived in Stillwater and Oklahoma City, both cities with established places to get a run in. When she moved here, she was faced with limited opportunities.

“I really didn’t have a place in Enid where I felt I could be outside and actually go far,” she said. “But when the trail came, I was ecstatic. It helps me love Enid; helps me feel like I had a place to go.”

While on the Park Board, Jackson will help guide the next phase of improvements to help Enid gain status for its outside activity opportunities.

“I think we’re moving in that direction. Enid is moving to be a community that can compete with other cities that can have those places to be outdoors,” she said.

The other new appointee, McDonald, said she is excited about the expansion of the trail already completed and hopes it continues further east, making it accessible to more people.

She also praised the addition of more rubbish containers.

“There’s been a lot of improvements added to the trail system to keep it clean,” she said.

The Parks Department has trimmed trees throughout the park system and is rebuilding and painting bleachers at Crosslin Park, the department said.

Other improvements include a remodeled Champion Gym, with sports equipment to be furnished by the city.

The city also should consider a second trailhead, McDonald said.

“I think it would be wonderful to have an additional one of those somewhere along the trail system, but that will have to come later, I understand,” she said.

Parks should be more accessible to more individuals and be a beacon to attract people from outside the city, she added.

“I want to see even more with the playground equipment — additional equipment in other parks,” she said, also commending those who will help bring a ferris wheel to Meadowlake Park.

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Progress 2014
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  • progress cover.jpg Growing Forward

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    April 12, 2014 3 Photos