So many great things happened this year because of your support! From new 12 new community Challenge Grant projects through the support of the Rasmuson Foundation to Anchorage’s first health and wellness park, learn more about what we have been up to this year in our Fall Newsletter!
Folker Park – Anchorage’s First Health and Wellness Park Opens
Folker Park is a short walk from the classes at UAA and just across the street from the Providence Horizon House elder care home. It’s the perfect place for Anchorage’s first “health and wellness park”.
Now, a new ADA accessible pathway weaves through the park in the shape of a Celtic healing knot, providing almost a quarter of a mile of walkable trail. Modern fitness equipment provides an opportunity for people of all ages to work on their dexterity and balance while peaceful musical chimes and a new play area provide entertainment for neighborhood children.
Residents of Providence House were at the heart of creating a space of “intergenerational wellness” and worked closely with Senior Park Planner Maeve Nevins-Lavtar of the Municipality on the design and construction. While walking the newly paved trail this summer, Rosa Lee Osborne, a resident at Providence House, came up with a unique idea to celebrate the grand opening of the park this fall. She thought that since the new path was wide enough for two wheelchairs they should celebrate the park with a walker and wheelchair parade. Dozens of seniors decorated their walkers and celebrated the rejuvenation of the park this September. Now neighbors have a park to connect with each other, a place for elders to spend precious time with grandchildren, and patients with the nearby hospital to take steps towards recovery.
In 2019, the Anchorage Park Foundation (APF) awarded more than $240,000 to 16 community-driven park and trail improvement projects across Anchorage. Every two years, APF invites the community to submit their ideas for a park or trail improvement project in Anchorage. Successful ideas are awarded with a dollar-for-dollar matching grant for the energy volunteers put into their project through cash donations, volunteer labor, and in-kind materials or services. The program is made possible through the generous support of the Rasmuson Foundation.