Carthage Parks and Rec Department developing plan to improve parks

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CARTHAGE, Mo. — Whether it’s heading out for a hike or splashing into a summer cooldown, a local parks department is developing a new vision for the future.

It’s the Carthage Parks and Rec Department that’s looking to make some changes.

The goal is a comprehensive parks master plan to focus new projects for 2022 and beyond.

“The thing we really enjoy are the activities they have on Fridays – where they have these musicians come in and play and people all congregate with lawn chairs,” said Bernie Chavez, Carthage.

Bernie and Brenda Chavez are big fans of Carthage parks, but they wouldn’t mind a few improvements.

“If they had some designated walking trails, I’d like that,” said Chavez.

Trails are just option under the microscope as the City of Carthage works on a comprehensive parks master plan.

“You know each park needs certain amenities for certain reasons. It’s a community park, a destination park – a lot of different things. Kellogg Lake ceding so much different than everything else – a variety of different needs,” said Mark Peterson, Carthage Parks Director.

Early priorities include increasing the city trail system and an expanded farmers market.

The list will also likely include a new aquatic center.

“We do have support for that. The scale of that aquatic center we’re still, we’re still looking for some additional public feedback related to that,” said Peterson.

Ideas also range from tennis and pickleball to soccer and basketball… all part of the quality of life goals for the city.

“We want people to live in Carthage, we want the great manufacturing base we haven’t Carthage when they’re attracting their talent, we want them to make a decision to live in Carthage and Parks and Recreation system plays a big part in that,” said Peterson.

The parks department will host public sessions to discuss results so far.

The first of those will be held Thursday, September 30th at 6:00 pm at Memorial Hall.

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