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Aug 21

Play in the Parks

Posted on August 21, 2020 at 10:11 AM by Kristy Bansemer

I was looking through my Facebook feed recently and came across a comment that made me smile. Here is an excerpt: “Took a walk with my husband tonight around our neighborhood and to Madison Ave Central Park. As we passed by people, it brought joy as they greeted us with a smile, a wave, or a "how are you doing?" Even the children were happy to see us...having two chihuahuas probably helped that. I say all that to say this, keep it up Derby.”

When I read comments like this and hear about people’s positive experiences it makes me proud to say I’m the Director of Parks, and proud to say I’m a Derbyite.

Derby is blessed with a robust and diverse park system that includes an aquatic park, skate park, riverfront park, disc golf course, all-inclusive playground and soon our first-ever dog park.

In the parks department, we work hard to mow and maintain over 500 acres of parks and green space, inspect and maintain 18 playground structures, plant flowers, trim trees and shrubs, maintain park rental properties and have our hike and bike paths ready for any activity. I drive through the parks every day, and it brings a smile to my face when I see families and friends laughing, playing, picnicking and enjoying time together outdoors.

Over the last few years, Derby has been fortunate to open news parks, including Madison Avenue Central Park in 2016 and Warren Riverview Park in 2018. Construction of Decarsky Park is nearly done. The dog park should open in fall 2020 and the ballpark in spring 2021. These parks would not have been possible without the support of the community.

The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated how important parks are and the critical and significant role they play for our quality of life and our need to spend time outdoors. If you’ve not visited a park recently, I invite you to come out for a walk and grab some fresh air and sunshine. I look forward to seeing you soon at one of Derby’s parks!

Steve White
Director of Parks

Published in the Derby Informer on Aug. 19, 2020.