The City of Aurora celebrated the opening of three parks within one week.
On Jun. 22, nearly 100 community members gathered for the rededication of the newly renovated Agnes Mundy Park adjacent to Aurora City Hall in downtown Aurora.
Over the weekend, the City 'cut the ribbons' on two more parks – one on the east side and one on the west side – which have both already become destinations for family fun, relaxation and recreation.
“Aurora has been ranked as one of the best places in the country to start and raise a family,” said Aurora Mayor Richard Irvin. “Many factors contribute to that ranking, including access to quality recreational activities and community spaces for residents.”
The City of Aurora Parks and Recreation Department will officially opened the new Mastodon Island Peninsula Park at this historic Phillips Park Mastodon Lake on Friday, June 28. The popular site includes a new interactive playground, walking paths through ecological habitats, educational activity pods and a large Mastodon statue where visitors can hear its roar.
“People are enjoying the new site and the educational components,” said Gio Santana, Parks and Recreations Superintendent. “Children are amazed to know they are standing in the same place where giant Mastodons roamed 10,000 years ago.”
The City of Aurora received a $400,000 Open Space Land Acquisition and Development (OSLAD) grant from the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) to assist with the project. The IDNR has also awarded the City an additional $365,000 OSLAD grant for the renovation of Wilder Park in downtown Aurora.
On Saturday, Jun, 29 at noon, the new Palace Street Park opened.
A partnership between Sixth Ward Alderman Michael Saville and the Fox Valley Park District, the former unused parking lot has been transformed into a regularly-used neighborhood park.
The Palace Street Park at Palace Street and Michigan Avenue – behind the Northgate Shopping Plaza on Lake Street – on Aurora’s west side is now complete with a new playground, ample green space and a roomy picnic shelter.
“It’s so amazing to see families enjoying an area that was once underused and undesired in the community,” said Sixth Ward Alderman Mike Saville. “We have revitalized the neighborhood with a useable community space for generations to come.”
Saville paid for the purchase of the property from ward funds and the Fox Valley Park District used allocated funds to design and build the new park.