Upcoming Projects

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BEAVERDALE PARK

The development of the Beaverdale Park Master Plan Concept has been a community and focus group-driven effort to renovate the existing 24.8-acre park in the heart of Beaverdale. To develop the master plan concept, the Parks and Recreation Planning Division focused on public input/community engagement and a thorough analysis of the park's existing conditions. Read about the Beaverdale Park Master Plan Concept HERE.  Donate

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SW 1ST STREET BRIDGE 

PARK STRUCTURE

Upcoming project that will bring a brand new amenity to the DM Park system. This urban park will feature a shade structure, unique playground equipment, planters and a dedicated pedestrian and bike lane. Donate

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LED Video Screen

Thanks to funding from the Prairie Meadows Community Betterment Grant, park supporters and the City of DM, a new LED portable video screen will be added to the parks and rec tool kit! The latest LED technology makes it possible to view the screen during daylight which will positively impact several existing programs and events and open the door to new opportunities to engage the community through outdoor recreation. 

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COHEN PARK

The Friends of Des Moines Parks is seeking local partners to help bring new and exciting types of outdoor recreation to Cohen Park near Downtown Des Moines. The proposed park amenities include 12-foot tall outdoor bouldering and climbing walls along with an interactive ball wall called Sutu. Your support will help provide unique recreation opportunities that typically require a gym membership or fee-for-use at a private organization - making their free, public use critical in the downtown urban core. More information about this exciting park renovation can be found HEREDonate

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NORTH SIDE COMMUNITY RECREATION CETNER

The Friends of Des Moines Parks is seeking local partners to help support and expand upon the newly planned North Side Community Recreation Center and Park located at the current Grubb YMCA and Brian Melton Field site. This project has just finished up with a comprehensive, inclusive, and transparent planning process including extensive community engagement to ensure an equitable process. The City of Des Moines has already committed $12 million towards the building and is hoping to raise much more to provide the best community recreation center possible. To learn more about the planning and engagement process, please visit the project page HERE.

Donate

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EVELYN K. DAVIS PARK

Evelyn K. Davis Park serves over 6,000 neighbors and many more visitors with activities & wide range of amenities. The park is home to the Summer City Hoops League, Futsal Tournaments, Youth Programs, pick up games, open shelters, baseball field, inclusive playground  equipment, open space and a spray ground.  The basketball courts see heavy use throughout the year and have not been resurfaced since 2013.  The Friends are excited to support this much needed improvement! Read more HERE

Donate

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Birdland Park 

The Birdland Park and Marina Master Plan calls for $54.4 million in construction improvements spread across 5 major project phases to implement the inclusive and visionary plan that was developed through the master planning process, then adopted by the Parks and Recreation Board on February 23, 2021, and City Council on March 22, 2021.  Read More   Donate

Ongoing Projects

SWIM LESSONS and YOUTH SPORTS

Since 2007 the Friends have proudly provided swim lesson scholarships to underserved families and English-Language Learners in the community. The program continues to grow and is experiencing greater participation and need every year. Two programs, YRSP and GRASP, offer qualifying families access to swim lessons and youth sports for just $5 per season. For $25 you can provide a scholarship for a child to learn how to swim or be part of a recreational sports team.

Special thanks to our longtime partner, Variety - The Children’s Charity for their ongoing support of the learn-to-swim initiative.  Their generous gift provided updated equipment and swim lesson instructions to over 800 children in Des Moines during the 2021 aquatic season.

 

Become a Swimmer! 

WREATHS ACROSS AMERICA

Wreaths Across America – Matching your support!

 

Friends of Des Moines Parks is supporting Wreaths Across America and we want to invite you to join us.  Many of the veterans buried in Woodland have not been remembered in over 100 years.  Sponsor wreaths will be placed at Woodland Cemetery on December 2022. For every two wreaths you sponsor, a third wreath is placed by matching support.  Consider $30 to place three wreaths before the matching deadline of November 30.  Our goal is to place 1,000 wreaths for veterans buried at Woodland Cemetery. 

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EVERY CHILD GETS A BALL

Several years ago, Des Moines Park and Recreation introduced the Youth Recreational Scholarship Program (YRSP), in partnership with Des Moines Public Schools, which allows students to receive swim lessons and/or youth sport experiences for only $5.


The most recent commitment made by our organization has been to provide every child participating in an athletic program with a ball specific to that sport at no cost to their family.

This innovative opportunity will allow youth to enjoy the activity at their local park or community center in season or out.

A benefit of sponsorship includes your company logo or name on the sports ball selected. For more information, please contact us

Current Projects

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MACRAE PARK

MacRae Park was purchased by the city in 1897. Current renovations to the park began in 2017 and the final phase of improvements will take just over a year to construct and are anticipated to be completed in 2022.  We are grateful for the generous support of our many park stewards. Read More

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WITMER PARK

Witmer Park phase II - slated for completion Spring 2022. Grand Opening anticipated in June. Witmer Park will boast a new playground, shelter and restroom facility (Drake and Beaverdale neighborhoods have been the driving force for this one. DNA logo attached. Waiting on BNA) And quote from DNA president Jennifer Sayers: “The Witmer Park Project, which includes the new playground and restroom, is a great addition to the recently renovated park. It will provide much-needed amenities for those enjoying the new floating fishing pier, shelters and looping path system. These facilities will allow park visitors to explore, play and relax, for as long as they’d like.

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CHESTERFIELD PARK

Funding allocated for basketball court and new playground slated for 2022 completion.

Questions

The Friends of the Parks dedicates their funds to the projects on this page.  If you have questions about a certain project, please do not hesitate to reach out to our Executive Director, Sarah at sarah@friendsofdmparks.org

To see a full list of all the exciting things going on in the Des Moines Parks, click HERE.

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