BUILDING A COMMUNITY PARK
By James Etzkorn, Echo Lake Community Group Board Member
Several 2021 survey respondents shared interest in a community park where people could meet, walk, and play. Ideally, the park would include a small parking lot, playground, picnic benches, and a small field. It would be open to the entire community and a great place to host community events while providing a safe place for kids to play and interact.
Establishing a new park is no small feat. We’ll need to find a location, apply for grants, and work with the county to get the park incorporated. A small team is working on a list of potential locations and additional suggestions are welcomed.
We have been working to find a way to create a park in our area. Because we do not have access to the funds to create a community park, we primarily reached out to the Snohomish County Parks and Recreation Department. After much discussion the decision was made that our community does not meet the criteria for the county to build a park here. While this is disappointing and unfortunate, at least now we know the facts in terms of not having county support.
Our only sliver of hope is to find someone to donate the needed land and then raise $500k-$1M through grants, donations, and sponsors to build out the park and only then would the county manage it. Needless to say, this option is a long shot.
We appreciate the research; phone calls and diligent effort James has made to identify a path to a park. Having a local park is a grand vision and it is a shame we don't meet the criteria. Somewhere down the line, perhaps, we may identify a path forward. But for now, it remains a dream for the Echo Lake Community.