For the first time in more than 20 years, the City of Blair is planning a new park for residents.
Generations Park, which will be located in the green space just north of the Blair Public Library and Technology Center in the Deerfield subdivision, will include a splash pad, playground equipment, pickleball courts, half-court basketball, bocce ball, horse shoe pits, green space, shelters and restrooms.
The park will also tie into the city's existing trail system.
A committee made up of community volunteers and city council members is seeking an estimated $500,000 in donations, while the city is applying for state grants through the Nebraska Game and Parks and other private foundations for roughly the same amount of funds to make the park a reality.
The land just north of the library is ideal for this new amenity for Blair. The city already owns the land and it fills a need. That area of the city is lacking a park.
The splash pad and the added recreational features of the park, which are geared toward multi-generations of families, will be a benefit for the community. It will likely be a draw for those seeking to move to Blair, and it can be a point of tourism for those outside of the city.
Fort Calhoun completed its splash pad project earlier this year and it's already gotten plenty of use, including from Blair residents.
Committee members said they took note on Fort Calhoun's effort to build its splash pad, which was funded by donations and grants.
Blair's new park and splash pad will also be funded by donations and grants, meaning no new tax increases will be needed. The city has already received substantial donations to help spur others to give.
The fundraising campaign was announced earlier this month. Conceptual plans, including a video, are available at the Blair library and on a Facebook page for the project.
Blair city staff and the committee should be commended for its work to move this project forward and bring a much needed amenity to the community and its residents. It's an exciting opportunity for all involved. Now, residents need to do their part and support this venture.