LACONIA — On Saturday, May 30, Wyatt Park will celebrate its grand re-opening after over two years and approximately $75,000 of renovations.
The Wyatt Park Revitalization Project gained momentum in 2012 when Healthy Eating Active Living (HEAL NH) awarded a $10,000 two-year grant to the city of Laconia to support healthy eating and active living in the Wyatt Park-South End neighborhood. The renovation plans for Wyatt Park and its immediate surroundings were developed in response to feedback from residents and business owners who voiced concerns about safety and access to the park.
Since the project began, there has been widespread support from community members and the city. While the Laconia Department of Public Works had a budget to repair a street in that area, the project was made a priority and an additional $15,000 was added to include extra safety and accessibility improvements, including ADA-compliant tipdowns for the crosswalks. The City Council allocated $50,000 for additional improvements in response to the widespread support for the project.
The combined funding allowed for several safety and accessibility improvements to Wyatt Park, while making the park more inviting for people of all ages, including:
• Water bubbler/bottle filling station in the park
• Bike rack and picnic tables
• New fencing and signage around the park
• Resurfaced basketball court painted for multiple uses including basketball, four square, hopscotch, and pickleball
• Lighting inside the park for safety
• Walking path installed around the park perimeter with extra green space
• High visibility signs, new crosswalks, sidewalks with tipdowns with detectable warning devices, and other pedestrian safety measures to improve safe access to the park.
The Wyatt Park Grand Re-Opening Ceremony will begin at 10 am on Saturday, May 30, with the Civil Air Patrol Color Guard performing the National Anthem. A ribbon cutting ceremony with Laconia Mayor Ed Engler and other dignitaries will follow. Community members and the media are invited to attend. Rain date is Sunday, May 31.
The Wyatt Park Revitalization Project in Laconia was developed in 2012 as a result of a two-year HEAL NH grant awarded to the City of Laconia in collaboration with Lakes Region HEAL to support more choices for residents to eat healthy and be physically active. The Wyatt Park project was led by the Laconia Parks and Recreation Department in partnership with the United Way, the Laconia Police, Wyatt Park Association, Department of Public Works, Lakes Region Partnership for Public Health, and Lakes Region HEAL. Neighborhood residents were involved from the planning stages through execution, providing valuable input during community forums and the action plan development process.