Fort Missoula Regional Park GRAND OPENING - April 29
12 - 4pm
Join Parks and Recreation and Missoula County Parks, Trails and Open Lands for Fort Missoula Regional Park’s Phase 1 Grand Opening celebration on Saturday, April 29, from 12 to 4 p.m. The celebration features a free vintage carnival for all ages, live music and dance, circus acts, tours of the new park, games and sports, food and beverage vendors, a free photo booth, prize raffles and much more. Mayor John Engen and Missoula County Commissioner Jean Curtiss will host a brief ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Bella Vista Pavilion at 1 p.m.
Kids and families can try out the new sports fields with entertaining lawn games like folf, parachute games, bocce ball and more. Sporty types will want to check out the Bella Vista synthetic turf field and try soccer, flag football, or Ultimate on the new surface. Parks and Recreation, with representatives of Historic Fort Missoula, will offer park tours at 12:15 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3 p.m.
The Missoula Folklore Society and Skippin’ A Groove Band will offer free contra dance lessons, and Scapegoat Outfitters will be on hand with a pack mule demonstration on the park’s CCC Trail. Adaptive bikes and Blue Bikes will be available for check out so that riders can take a spin new park’s trails. Several community organizations are hosting free carnival games at the Bella Vista Plaza.
Mac The Moose, the new park’s mascot, will lead a Little Red Wagon Parade for younger kids at 2 p.m. To enter, kids should bring their decorated wagon, tricycle, strider bike or bicycle to the Bella Vista Pavilion at 2 p.m. for a short procession around the Bella Vista Field. All participants will receive an award.
Also on April 29, The Historical Museum at Fort Missoula is hosting its annual Forestry Day celebration from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Learn more about Forestry Day at www.fortmissoulamuseum.org.
Residents may walk or bike to the Grand Opening via the Bitterroot Trail and the new pedestrian bridge on South Reserve St. The public is invited to join a Seersucker Bike Ride to the new bridge and on to Fort Missoula, departing from Free Cycles at 12 p.m. For easiest parking access, cars should enter the park from 36th Street and South Avenue.
The new park is a joint City-County project, and is funded by the county-wide 2014 Parks and Trails Bond. The voter-approved $42 million measure allocated $38 million for Fort Missoula Regional Park; $3 million for the Missoula County trails program, and $1 million for new and improved playgrounds throughout the City. Phase 2 of Fort Missoula Regional Park is slated to open in 2018.
Phase 1 construction at Fort Missoula includes the Bella Vista events pavilion, a 1500-sq. ft. timber and stone structure with a fireplace, skylight and portable dance floor, the Bella Vista synthetic turf lighted multi-sport field, up to 10 (depending on the sport) multi-sport natural turf fields, an additional pavilion, two playgrounds, historical interpretation, plus trails, restrooms and parking. The new entrance of the park, located at South Avenue and 33rd St., features a bronze statute commemorating the Fort’s history as headquarters of one of the country’s largest Civilian Conservation Corps districts in the 1930s and ‘40s.
The park’s grand opening is sponsored by The Land Group, Inc., Jackson Contractor Group, Inc., Knife River Corporation, Summit Valley Turf, Musco Lighting, Rainmaker Sprinkler Supply, OZ Architects, Hunter Industries, Jacobson Electrical Contracting, Forever Lawn, O'Keefe Drilling, Tetra Tech, Inc., Republic Services. Radio sponsors include the Montana Club & Missoula Broadcasting Company.
Partnering organizations for the event include Missoula County Parks, Trails and Open Lands, The Historical Museum at Fort Missoula, Rocky Mountain Museum of Military History, Society of American Foresters, Missoula Big Band, Missoula Folklore Society, Downtown Dance Collective, Free Cycles Community Bike Shop, Missoula Redevelopment Agency, The Trough and Olde Dairy, Lake Missoula Tea Company, CASA of Missoula, UM Volunteers in Action, 1000 New Gardens, UM Circle K International, Boys and Girls Club of Missoula County, UM Mortar Board, A Carousel for Missoula, Skippin’ A Groove Band, UM Circus Club, Moksha Aerial Studio Collective (MASC), Boogie Down Studios, Scapegoat Outfitters, Bernice’s Bakery.
For more information, call 721-PARK.
Free Cycles SeerSucker Bike Ride To Fort Missoula Regional Park Grand Opening
What better way to get to the new Fort Missoula Regional Park than by bike? Free Cycles will lead a free group bike ride from Free Cycles at 732 S. 1st St. W. to Fort Missoula Regional Park. Participants will also be the first to use the pedestrian crossing bridge on the south end of Reserve St. Dress the part of the CCC-era and wear your best vintage outfits. Bring your own bike, or there will be some bikes available for use. Bikes are first come, first served. Meet at Free Cycles by 12pm on April 29 to join this fun bike ride.
Free Cycles will also host a bike tune-up station at FMRP and fun bike games.
Fort Missoula Regional Park Grand Opening Sponsors:
Official Radio Partners: Missoula Broadcasting & The Montana Club
Want to reserve a space at Fort Missoula Regional Park?