The latest happenings in Volunteer Park!
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VPT LogoThe mission of Volunteer Park Trust, a volunteer-driven organization, is to restore, protect and preserve this city and national landmark for today and for generations to come.

Photo of Volunteer Park
Hi Friend of Volunteer Park —

There's a lot happening in Volunteer Park. Here is the latest news on our incredible  five year milestone, the amphitheater, gardens, and  upcoming events.

As always, many thanks to our donors and volunteers!

Volunteer Park Trust

The Power of Volunteers
2016 Picnic in the Park
This year Volunteer Park Trust proudly reaches its five-year milestone.
This is significant because many organizations never make it this far. As others have learned, it’s not enough to have enthusiasm for a cause — you need to attract dedicated people willing to do the groundwork. You need to inspire your community to provide support.  You need to produce real results that everyone can point to. 
I am so proud of the volunteers who have stepped forward to create five years of incredible improvements to Volunteer Park.
The Trust started in 2012 with just four neighbors who came together to address the failing grounds and lost gardens of Volunteer Park. Frustrated by the city’s inability to provide more support, they decided to take matters into their own hands.
Since then, the Volunteer Park Trust Steering Committee has grown to a dozen professionals volunteering their expertise in everything from landscape architecture to finance and budgeting, and so much more.
Our restoration events have brought in hundreds of volunteers officially logging in over 11,000 hours of work in park. (See Doug's excellent article below detailing those improvements.) Our free community-wide celebrations have delighted nearly 10,000 people.  The Trust continues to outreach to poor and underserved neighboring communities to let them know of the free resources that Volunteer Park offers to everyone in our city.
All this would not be possible without the incredible outpouring of support from people like you.  As we look toward our next incredible five years, we know that the community will be there for us volunteering time, expertise, and resources to our cause. We can’t thank you enough.
Brian Giddens
Chair, Steering Committee
Save the Date!
April 23 — Spring Restoration Day

Image: Spring Restoration Day

Mark your calendar for our annual Spring Restoration Day: Sunday, April 23, 2017 from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM. 

We’ll be sprucing up garden beds and restoring gravel paths.  Come join the community fun to make Volunteer Park more beautiful for everyone.

We'll provide the free coffee and doughnuts!
4Culture Award
VPT Receives Sustained Support!

Image: 4Culture Logo

We’re proud to announce that Volunteer Park Trust has been awarded a Preservation Sustained Support program grant from 4Culture of $2,500 a year for 2017 and 2018.

Look for the green 4Culture logo on our promotions and website.

We’re delighted by the increasing public support for our mission. Thank you 4Culture!

Amphitheater Design Wrapping Up
Schematic Design Nearly Completed

Photo: Amphitheater ImageSchematic design for the new Volunteer Park Amphitheater is nearing completion. After months of community input, a final picture of the proposed new building is emerging.
ORA Architects, the design firm leading the project, has been working on many facets of the evolving design to address the needs of performing groups, neighbors, Seattle Parks & Recreation and ADA officials, as well as the Seattle Landmarks Board, acoustic and structural engineers, and the general public.
Throughout this process, the team has maintained a balance between whimsical design and required functionality. (See our notice for the design presentation open house below.) A key element of the design is the building’s ability to transform from an enclosed performance space to an open, pass-through pavilion. Also important is the restoration of the west lawn pathway and landscaping, which will bring back the Olmsted intent for the park.
Volunteer Park Trust appreciates the work of the all-volunteer Amphitheater Task Force, and chair Eliza Davidson. This group has volunteered hundreds of hours over the past two years to shepherd this project from a vision to reality. The Task Force held its final meeting in March.
The Amphitheater Project will now enter the Design Development phase to refine the building elements and assess costs.
Photo: Amphitheater PlanAmphitheater Design Open House

Come See the Designs in Person!

Volunteer Park Trust will hold an open house for the public to come view images of the new Amphitheater for Volunteer Park: 
Thursday, April 6, 2017
5:00 PM — 7:00 PM

Volunteer Park Conservatory

1247 15th Ave E., Seattle, WA 98112
Image: Conservatory Logo
Project leads ORA Architects will be on hand to answer questions. Many thanks to the Volunteer Park Conservatory for hosting this important event.
Five Years: A Legacy of Restoration
   — By Doug Bayley
Image: Volunteer Park Restoration
In 2012 Volunteer Park Trust started out with more than a vision — we had a detailed, purposeful plan. We knew that in order to realize our major long-term goals we’d have to start small. We knew we’d need to build important relationships with Seattle Parks and all the Park’s stakeholders. We also knew that we could only produce results by relying on local donors and lots of volunteers.

Five years later we can point to our successes with pride:
  • The main concourse is newly replanted, beautiful, and cared for — an outcome we prioritized knowing that the SAAM closure could possibly make the central section of the park less welcoming.
  • Two major garden beds by the lily ponds have been cleared and replanted, restoring the 1909 Olmsted planting plan.
  • We’ve worked with Parks to make major repairs to the aging irrigation system.
  • Three main entrances to Volunteer Park have been cleaned up thanks to over a dozen community restoration events and numerous hours of volunteer help.
  • We’ve partnered with the Conservatory and SAAM to establish the Sustainability Coalition, finding green solutions to the park’s energy us
Volunteer Park Trust has proven to the community that we are dedicated, effective, and here for the long haul. We can now look to more major projects in Volunteer Park: the Amphitheater, Reservoir, Water Tower, and turning the southeast entrance to the park into a welcoming gateway.
We’re proud to have achieved our initial goals. We’re grateful you’ve helped us along the way. With your continued support, ideas and volunteer time, we can work together to accomplish even more in the next five years.
Copyright © 2017 Volunteer Park Trust, All rights reserved.

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