A two-year joint park project with the Town of Orangeville and the Orangeville Lions Club officially opened on May 26, with a free community event day.
The 8.5-acre property (adjacent to an existing small park), originally known as Brown’s Farm, was purchased nine years ago from the Upper Grand District School Board. The Town initiated a plan for the purchased property to become parkland, and engaged in community consultations to collect input from residents.
The Orangeville Lions Club had stepped forward with a proposed outdoor sports pad project, and the expanded park proved an ideal location for the project. The sports pad, complete with LED lighting, was constructed in 2016 and provides a year-round opportunity for outdoor sports such as hockey, ball hockey, basketball and pickleball. To expand the park amenities even further, the Lions Club funded a picnic shelter, completed in the fall of 2017.
Additional features of the park were completed by the Town, and include a national standard sports field, with smart lighting, two minor-sized sports fields, a perimeter asphalt trail with a variety of outdoor fitness equipment stations, a washroom facility, various landscaping elements, increased parking capacity for over 100 vehicles, and open space.
Saturday’s event included sports activities and games for the whole family, the Lions Club food truck to, face painting and a bouncy castle. Mayor Jeremy D Williams opened the park with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. “This park is a snapshot of Orangeville at its finest,” Mayor Williams said. “A huge thank you to the Orangeville Lions Club, and a huge thank you to area residents for letting us work together to make this happen.”
Orangeville Lions Club President Dan Roach commented on the beginnings of the sports pad project. “In 2009, Lions Club member Paul Snell came up with the idea of building a sports pad, and we approached the Town to partner with us. The club, with the support of the community, has invested over $175,000 in the park, and we’ve put in roughly 1,200 man hours by club members, and the result is what you see today.”
Although the park’s sports fields and sports pad have been enjoyed by residents for a while now, the official opening marks the completion of the ambitious joint project.