July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 42

FLINT
" We have parks in every ward,
every neighborhood in Flint. And
we have people who deserve to
have equitable access and equitable
facilities, " Edwards contends.
" They deserve the ability to use
parks that are safe, clean public
spaces - and the city doesn't have
the capacity to do that. So, we've
tried to figure out ways to make
that happen, so that everybody has
access to those spaces. "
The Water Crisis
In April 2014, Flint was still reeling
from a crippling economy and bankruptcy
when it was dealt an even bigger
blow: a contaminated water crisis.
As a result of the state's bungled
cost-saving measure that sourced the
city's water supply from the Flint
River, adults and children contracted
lead poisoning by ingesting drinking
water from corroded waterpipes.
What's more, Flint residents were
forced to use bottled water for drinking,
cooking and bathing.
" We're still doing waterline replacement
to deal with the lead, "
notes Edwards. " People are still using
bottled water, and so we can't have a
conversation about Flint without recognizing
that [it's] an ongoing issue. "
The Park Adopters
For the
past 14 years, Shareka
Howard and her now ex-husband
have been proud park adopters
of Windiate Park. Both born and
raised in Flint, the two saw firsthand
the conditions of their neighborhood
park and the lack of maintenance
care. However, they knew
they wanted their four kids to be
able utilize and enjoy the park.
" Instead of talking about it [and]
trying to get people to do something
about it, we decided to do it
ourselves - to start maintaining
it, " Howard explains.
In addition to picking up the garbage
and changing out the trash
bags in Windiate Park, Howard
also tended to her neighborhood's
gateway centers, grass areas dividing
the streets, by planting flowers.
Dominque Strong, a Flint resident
for the past 37 years, also wanted to
make a difference in her community.
" I decided almost eight years ago to
be a park adopter of Brennan Park, "
Strong says. " We do not have any
community centers in the seventh
ward of Flint. So, I adopted the park
to implement annual events and programming. "
In
addition to Brennan Park,
Strong adopted McClellan Park
and McKinley Park. She visits the
parks at least three times a week,
driving by to assess whether trash
needs to be picked up or if damages
to the playground equipment
need to be reported.
Chad Schlosser, a Flint resident
since 2011 and a father of three
young children, was volunteering to
clean up his local park before he even
knew Adopt a Park existed. He eventually
connected with Edwards and
KGCB, adopting Mott Park Recreation
Area and Mott Park in 2017.
" We'll rake leaves; pick up tree
branches that have fallen; cut back
overgrowth around the playground,
on the stairs or on the tennis courts; repair
and paint benches; edge the curb;
and level any holes that we find, " says
Schlosser about the duties that he and
his band of volunteers take on.
A Personal Connection
Kevin Cronin has a unique connection
to one of the neighborhood
parks. " Basically, once I learned
about the Adopt a Park program, I
was really interested and intrigued
by it, " says Cronin. " But, it also
[had] a lot more sentimental [value]
on my end. " The park Cronin
adopted was named after his
grandfather, Donald R. Cronin,
who served as the mayor of Flint
from 1968 to 1970.
Back in the late 1930s, the Soap
Box Derby Race was a community
event cherished by Flint residents.
However, the race took place on a
city street. Mayor Cronin helped
establish a permanent track for the
event, so in 1969, Cronin Derby
Downs opened to the public.
Today,
the mayor's
After Flint Parks and Recreation disbanded, all the afterschool
programming and sports programs were absorbed
by other community partner organizations.
42 Parks & Recreation | JULY 2 0 22 | PARK S ANDRECRE AT ION . OR G
grandson
aims to honor his legacy through
the Adopt a Park program. David
Cronin tends to the park, picking
up trash and removing leaves or
PHOTO COURTESY OF NANCY EDWARDS

July 2022 - Parks & Recreation

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of July 2022 - Parks & Recreation

July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - Intro
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - Cover1
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - Cover2
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 1
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 2
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 3
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 4
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 5
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 6
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 7
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 8
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 9
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 10
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 11
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 12
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 13
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 14
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 15
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 16
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 17
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 18
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 19
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 20
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 21
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 22
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 23
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 24
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 25
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 26
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 27
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 28
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 29
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 30
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 31
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 32
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 33
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 34
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 35
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 36
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 37
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 38
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 39
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 40
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 41
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 42
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 43
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 44
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 45
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 46
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 47
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 48
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 49
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 50
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 51
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 52
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 53
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 54
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 55
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - 56
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - Cover3
July 2022 - Parks & Recreation - Cover4
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2021
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com