Parks notebook

Halloween in the parks

The following Southwest recreation centers are hosting family-friendly Halloween festivities during the spookiest week of the year:

Oct. 24: Enjoy scary stories, an art activity, a sing-along and treats from 2–3 p.m. at Kenwood Park, 2101 Franklin Ave. W. for $15 per person.

Oct. 27: Participate in a costume parade, craft projects and games at Fuller Park, 4800 Grand Ave. S. from 10:30–11:30 a.m. for $2 per child.

Oct. 31: Several activities planned throughout Southwest, including:

• Play games, walk through a haunted house and sit by a bonfire at Armatage Park, 2500 W. 57th St., from 6–8 p.m.

• Warm up next to a fire, share chilling stories and dance at Bryant Square Park, 3101 Bryant Ave. S. from 6–8 p.m.

• Grab a free treat bag and play games at Fuller Park, 4800 Grand Ave. S., from 6–8 p.m.

• Stop by Kenny Park, 1328 W. 58th St., for a goodie bag from 6–8 p.m.

• From 9:30–11 a.m., Kenwood Park, 2101 W. Franklin Ave., will host a pumpkin painting party with treats and a story about a runaway pumpkin for $15 per person. From 4–6 p.m., the recreation center will host a Halloween dinner complete with a fortuneteller, games and treat bags.

• At Linden Hills Park, 3100 W. 43rd St., participants can stroll through theme-based rooms and snack on free treats from 6-8 p.m.

• Join in the games and eat candy at Lyndale Farmstead Park, 3900 Bryant Ave. S. from 6–8 p.m.

• Pick up a treat bag from Lynnhurst Park, 1345 Minnehaha Pkwy. W., from 6–8 p.m.

• Enjoy dinner, games and treat bags at Martin Luther King Park, 4055 Nicollet Ave. S. from 6–8 p.m.

• Painter Park’s Halloween party includes a pizza dinner, cookie decorating and games from 4–6 p.m. at 620 W. 34th St.

• A preschool Halloween party will take place from 10–11:30 a.m. at Pershing Park, 3523 W. 48th St. with a parade, games and snacks. Kids can also pick up free treat bags from 6–8 p.m.

• Whack a piñata and try to win an award for the best costume at Whittier Park, 425 W. 26th St. from 6–8 p.m.

• Stop by Windom South Park for a bag of treats at 5843 Wentworth Ave. S. from 6–8 p.m.

For more information about recreation center Halloween parties visit minneapolisparks.org.

Citizen Advisory Committee Ordinance amendments

At the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board’s (MPRB) Oct. 3 meeting, the Planning Committee approved a request from staff to amend an ordinance that dictates public participation regarding proposed projects.

The revision states that "the Park Board shall cause a Citizen Advisory Committee (CAC) to be created when major new park facility construction or significant redevelopment projects are proposed and funded."

The policy attached to the ordinance would specify that "major" and "significant" projects are those costing more than $100,000.

Additionally, staff changed the distance in which neighbors would be notified about upcoming CAC meetings from three city blocks to a 1,000-foot radius, and shortened the amount of time in which neighbors could appeal decisions from 10 days to five days.

The Park Board would also be required to notify the public about full board hearings regarding the proposed project within five days, rather than 10 days.

Lowry Hill resident Barry Lazarus and members of Park Watch, a MPRB watchdog group, are creating a counter proposal that they believe would be better for citizens. Their version would write the $100,000 cost minimum into the ordinance, retain the three-block meeting notification distance, and require the MPRB to inform "interested parties," such as Park Watch, about CACs.

The Park Board is trying to avoid citizen participation by making it more difficult for people, Lazarus said, adding, "All we’re asking commissioners to do is provide transparency, which they should want to do."

Parade Stadium construction work

The Park Board has approved a change in their contract with the construction crew working on Parade Stadium to include a irrigation system around the field, remove the south restrooms and pave the walkway from the field to the parking lot.

Last spring the field was outfitted with more than $1 million in new artificial turf and high efficiency lighting. Park Board staff is also recommending the realignment of a road next to the field that connects Kenwood Parkway with Dunwoody Avenue, though the board has yet to vote on the idea.

Lakes District Council

Over the past year, members of the Park and Recreation Board have been meeting with neighborhood representatives from Southwest to discuss issues pertaining to the lakes.

Each month, participants talk about issues such as the Lake Calhoun Master Plan, Park Board comprehensive plan and Parade Stadium.

Last month, neighborhood representatives heard a presentation about the Park Board’s budget, met all of the recreation center directors in the district, and learned about People for Parks, a nonprofit group dedicated to improving parks.

According to Lakes District Manager Paul Hokeness, each neighborhood association in the area is encouraged to appoint someone to attend the meetings.

The next meeting will be held at Armatage Park on Oct. 25 at 7 p.m. Future meetings will be held quarterly, on the forth Thursday of every January, April, July and October.

Contact Mary O’Regan at [email protected] or 436-5088.