A Roeland Park citizens committee raising money for a walking trail around R Park has already surpassed its original goal of collecting $6,300 by Roeland Park’s 63rd birthday on July 2 and has extended the goal to $7,500.
The walking trail is just the first phase of development for the city park. The trail is expected to cost $25,000 to develop, according to Gretchen Davis, who has been leading the fundraising drive. The parks committee will decide what comes next, Davis said, and the citizens committee will continue to raise money.
The city also will be applying for a matching funds grant from the Sunflower Foundation that the committee hopes will double the money it is raising. If a total of $12,500 can be raised locally, that will put the walking trail within reach. And another major fundraising push is in the works for this October when the group will host the Bacon, Blues and Brews event at the community center.
The October 11 event at the community center will feature food stations with all recipes containing bacon. The brews include tastings of both coffee and beer. And blues music rounds out the offerings which will be available for one ticket price. A marketplace for donated gift certificates also will be part of the event.
The walking trail material will be crushed limestone. The city also can apply for matching funds for new trees. When enough money has been raised to complete the walking trail, it will be on to another part of the park master plan.
Davis said businesses in Roeland Park, Fairway and Mission have all been supporting the fundraising effort. Contributors will be invited to celebrate the city’s birthday with Mayor Joel Marquardt.