The following slide show will hopefully give you an idea of what went into creating The Children’s Park. It was a tremendous effort of many different people to make it a reality.
The dream of building The Children’s Park in Tyler began in January 2002. It was completed and donated to the City of Tyler in October 2004.
October 26, 2004 – The Children’s Park donated to the City of Tyler
September 19, 2004 – Grand Opening
March – September 2004 – Construction
* Ground Breaking
Our Ground Breaking Ceremony was held January 22, 2004. We had over 150 people from the community attend. It was a beautiful day, with clear blue skies and crisp cool air. Our honorable Mayor Joey Seeber spoke, on behalf of the City; lines were read from essays, written by HOGG Middle School students, expressing what the park will mean to them; and Shaune Martinez sang beautifully Steven Curtis Chapman’s, “Fingerprints of God”. It perfectly expressed our purpose for this special park, to honor children and make a statement that they are loved and highly valued.
* Signed the contract with our Construction Manager and had our Ground Breaking Ceremony
* The City of Tyler approved a matching grant for $225,000
* Launching first phase of major fundraising campaign
April – May 2003
* Budget finalized and fundraising materials put together
January – March 2003
* The Children’s Park received approval from the City Council, after recommendation from the Planning and Zoning Commission, to obtain a Special Use Permit to build the park. The vote was unanimous.
* A special fund raising committee was formed to raise the necessary funds to build the park.
* MHS Planning and Design delivered the final city approved park designs.
* The Tyler City Council voted 4-0 to have the city act as the non-profit organization to collect the donations and assume maintenance of The Children’s Park.
October – December, 2002
* The money was raised to purchase the land with donations made to our Founding Mothers Campaign. Nearly 200 people contributed to include citizens of Tyler and surrounding areas, friends and family.
* Contract signed to purchase the property on the corner of Dobbs and Broadway, in Tyler, next to Hogg Middle School. The owner allowed a closing date to be set for February 2003, allowing us time to raise the money.
* Children Are A Gift Foundation was formed to oversee the development of the park and assist the city with ongoing maintenance.
* City of Tyler voted to support The Children’s Park in Tyler and to receive it as a donation, to become a new city park, once it is completed.
* Elena’s Children’s Park Committee, from Dallas, came and did a presentation for citizens who were interested in developing a similar park in Tyler
* The Tyler Park Planning Committee was formed.