PARKVILLE, Mo. — After months of being under water, a popular Northland park is slowly coming back to life, and those efforts are now getting a boost thanks to some major league funding.
Parkville’s English Landing Park is a popular spot for little league baseball practices and games.
“We play baseball a lot. We are a baseball family, so we are always looking for a field to go and play and practice. Pretty much when we get home from school, that’s what we do,” mom Julie Brickey said.
But this year, the family’s favorite fields at English Landing Park were out of play. The ball fields were buried under 8 feet of flood water.
“We went and saw the floodwaters, and it was devastating. To see my son, who loves to play baseball, and he’s kept asking, ‘When is it going to be OK to play again?’ And we don’t have an answer,” Brickey said.
English Landing Park is slowly coming back to life. The trails just opened this month. But the ball fields, which had just gotten fresh dirt days before the flooding began, are another story.
“A lot of the area was washed out,” said Alysen Abel with the city of Parkville.
All the fencing had to be replaced. New netting and field work are still needed.
“Our goal with this is with FEMA’s help at 75%, we’re trying to get back to pre-flood conditions. And that means trying to re-do the infields, and re-grade some of the areas that have washed away from the flooding,” Abel said.
Thanks to a $25,000 grant from Royals Charities and its community partner Price Chopper, covering the rest of those repairs and a few extra upgrades are now possible.
“When Parkville had all this damage. We came out here to see it, and as soon as we saw it, it was a no-brainer for us to get involved,” said Amanda Grosdidier, director of Royals Charities.
The “Royalty Fields” program has pitched in to help rebuild several ballparks around the Midwest following this spring and summer’s devastating floods.
The Brickey family is thankful for the investment in the community and is now itching to get back on the field, once repairs are done in the spring.
“I can’t wait to tell our son, Austin, that we can go play baseball at English Landing,” Brickey said.
Parkville is also still working to restore its dog park, disc golf course and playground equipment, which were covered with loads of silt and flood debris.