The City of Medford invites citizens to participate in the process that will culminate in the replacement of the children’s community playground at Bear Creek Park.
Rejuvenating the 30-year-old wooden fort-like structure along Siskiyou Boulevard with a similar style using modern materials was identified by the Department and the Medford Parks and Recreation Commission as a high-priority capital improvement project for the 2017-19 funding cycle.
The City is teaming up with JWA Public Affairs, the Medford Parks and Recreation Foundation, the Medford School District, and original playground manufacturer Leathers Inc. to replicate the original community design-and-build process and to galvanize fundraising and community engagement.
“The unique Bear Creek playground has long been the centerpiece play structure of the Medford parks system,” Parks, Recreation and Facilities Management Director Rich Rosenthal says. “It has captured the imagination of multiple generations of children, and our goal is to make the new playground the biggest and best it can be.”
The playground was installed in 1987 following an extensive fundraising campaign and an all-volunteer construction effort consisting of hundreds of donors and volunteers spearheaded by the Kiwanis Club of Medford, the Family Connection, Inc., and the City.
Although most of the original wood planks have been replaced, several playground elements have been removed over the years for various reasons, and the entire wooden structure is near the end of its lifecycle.
Students from Hoover and Roosevelt – the nearest elementary schools – will provide design suggestions at in-school workshops that will culminate with a draft play structure concept in late October. Volunteers are sought to assist with fundraising, coordination of materials, food and special needs.
Former Medford mayor, city councilor and state legislator Al Densmore, a JWA senior account executive who was heavily involved with the original Bear Creek playground project, is overseeing public outreach.
“This is the type of project everyone can get behind,” Densmore says. “With broad community support, we can make the Bear Creek Park playground even better, even more imaginative and far more accessible to children with disabilities than the well-loved original version. We can do this!”
For details on how to get involved, please click HERE.