City of Lakewood Dedicates New Public ParkAugust 21, 2020
On Monday August 17th, Lakewood City Council unanimously adopted legislation to create the city’s newest public park. The park, now known as Bernice Pyke Park, is located on six parcels of land between Belle Ave. and St. Charles Ave. north of Detroit Ave., commonly referred to as St. Charles Green.
Over the years, residents have enjoyed using the space for recreation and approached their councilmembers about preserving and protecting the land for this purpose. Councilmember At Large Tristan Rader was listening. “After hosting a well-attended community meeting and circulating a survey, the feedback was nearly unanimous that residents wanted this land protected as a park,” said Rader. In response to the feedback, Mr. Rader led the charge at City Hall to see to it that the area received attention and improvements including adding benches and trees and remediating construction materials to make the area safe and more inviting.
After considering many potential names for the new park, Councilmembers Rader, Shachner, and Neff proposed to name it after Bernice Pyke, Lakewood’s own pioneering suffragist of the 20th century who played a critical role in securing the vote for Lakewood women in 1917 and then for all American women in 1920. In addition to her role as leader in the suffragist movement, Ms. Pyke achieved many “firsts” for women’s rights including being the first woman to run for mayor of Lakewood and the first woman to serve as a delegate to the Democratic National Convention.
The park was officially dedicated Bernice Pyke Park in a small ceremony on Tuesday August 18th which also marked the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States, granting women the right to vote. John Pyke, the grandson of Bernice Pyke was present to make remarks and accept the ceremonial resolution dedicating the park.
At the ceremony, Mayor Meghan George expressed her enthusiasm for the new park and its namesake. “Because of Lakewood’s population density, our public green space is of great importance to our residents. I am delighted to add this new park to our collection of high-quality public spaces and thrilled that it will pay homage to Bernice Pyke, a true Lakewood heroine,” said Mayor George.
As with all its parks, the City of Lakewood intends to maintain and make incremental improvements to the park. Any significant improvements or redesign will be informed by public input.
For more information: Contact Councilmember At Large Tristan Rader 440-315-2852.
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