Our group is aimed at correcting the loss of representation that occurred when the Fairmount Park Commission was abolished. Reestablish civic engagement on matters in the park that we see being made exclusively by politicians.
Parks and green spaces are sacred areas for inhabitants of Philadelphia’s concrete jungle. The benefits of green spaces, pervious surfaces, and natural refuges are countless, which is why we must preserve these areas. We are therefore forming a group called the Friends of Fairmount to have an independent voice in the future of the Park and we want you to join.
Many organizations call a certain park or natural space of the City their home and steward this region as if it were indeed their own. Volunteers spend time, money, and resources to make these slices of the park lands protected and pristine. Over the past couple years, we have noticed a pattern with the City not properly maintaining the lands, ignoring these stewards’ efforts, avoiding community engagement, and simply invading these areas. Many groups are currently dealing with these types of issues such as Sedgley Disc Golf Course, Edgely Ultimate Fields, FDR Park, MLK Drive, and more.
City government is determining the development of greenspace in the park without input from the residents, community, and park users. Initiatives are being approved without due process. Stakeholders have no or limited say in these changes. Environmental impacts are insufficiently reviewed. User impacts have been woefully ignored.
The Fairmount Park Commission used to make all decisions about park lands in the City, but since the Commission disbanded, these decisions have now become more political. With no or little counterbalance or alternative say in park matters, the City will continue to use their governmental overreach making decisions on behalf of the community without actually tapping into the community or soliciting proper feedback and engagement.
Our voices aren't being heard individually but cannot be ignored together. Although our groups are unique and distinct we share the same values in loving and protecting the greenspace that Fairmount Park provides. Join today as an individual or part of an organization.
As stewards of this land, we need to band together and protect these spaces. Friends of Fairmount is a diverse group of citizens that use and value the green and open spaces that exist in our region. We are coming together to form a coalition of folks willing to share their stories and connections with their park.
I first joined PADA my freshman year of high school. I was 14 years old at the time and thought I was just playing a sport as any other athlete. I was entirely unaware of the possibilities and opportunities that this community would offer. I was able to discover unique athletic abilities and talent within the community with the many camps and events that were hosted on these fields.Read More
I would frequently birdwatch there because it was a mature forest full of native hardwoods and flowering shrubs that attracted literally dozens of bird species on their way to John Heinz. I also studied under a local herbalist, David Jefferies. He would often use the space as a living classroom to teach me and others about edible and medicinal plants and mushrooms.Read More
The Fairmount Park Commission was the independent Board of Directors whose mission was “to preserve and protect” Fairmount Park, as it had done since 1868 by the authority of two acts passed by our State Legislature. [...]Read More
The great advantage for all of us with the Park Commission was having a consistency of standards throughout the many small and the several very large parks. The professional Fairmount Park Director and park staff managed things excellently day to day, and sought advice from the Commission when decisions required a Board of Directors. The Commissioners weighed in on major issues for consistency and fairness when things intruded on the mission “to protect and preserve” the park.
While going through a divorce a colleague encouraged me to join PADA's summer learning league, Uhle at Edgely Ultimate fields. I knew what ultimate was, had even picked up for my high school team a decade prior, but I had no idea what kind of a community it fostered. PADA and Egdely provided me a safe space to be as I rebuilt my life and gave me friends when I really needed them. I was so grateful that I eventually began volunteering for the organization. First as a captain, and then as coordinator for some of the middle school leagues the organization subsidizes through the adult leagues.Read More
I support keeping Edgely as a full time playing field for frisbee and cricket at no cost to the city. There are literally eight fields filled with hundreds of active participants in both sports which runs much longer than the football season, without the risk of concussions or the destruction of land to put in a football field and stands. The tens of thousands of dollars wasted on Astro turf, made from fossil fuels and not recyclable sets a bad precedent when there are plenty of high school and college football fields that could be a planned shared resource and sit empty for more than half the year.Read More
The great advantage for all of us with the Park Commission was having a consistency of standards throughout the many small and the several very large parks. The professional Fairmount Park Director and park staff managed things excellently day to day, and sought advice from the Commission when decisions required a Board of Directors.Read More
I am writing to you today to share my concerns about the management of resources since Parks and Rec took over for the Fairmount Park Commission. I write to you as a long-term board member of the Fairmount Soccer Association, including President of the Board of Directors for the last 8 years. I have also been involved at the coaching and board management level of several other youth sports organizations over the last two decades, so I have seen the difference an independent community organization and a city agency can do when working in partnership. Fairmount Soccer Association is a long-standing steward of park land in East Fairmount Park and provides programming and services to the children of approximately 650 of tax-paying city residents.Read More
I moved to Philadelphia (Center City) a year ago with my dog Cisco. I work for the National Park Service and have the utmost respect and appreciation for public lands. Cisco and I frequent FDR park several times a week. While there, she romps about the meadows and sniffs all the good nature smells and I enjoy the quiet and wooded time away from the city.Read More
There is something magical about Edgely, the home of Ultimate in Philly. A greenspace like no other. Fields. Lightning bugs. Surrounded by trees. With a house (and a bathroom), I once helped paint. And memories you might not ever think were possible, were created. Under the blazing sun, on sweltering, humid summer evenings, and in the cool dark nights, around a grill, connecting with the other humans with words and over food, in different ways than you did playing your sport. And with full bellies and sharing of humanity, we grew. And we grow.Read More
We're getting organized. Take a look through the various initiatives that are experiencing loss of open space without due process. If you'd like to lean an initiative in your corner of Fairmount Park, get in touch by visiting our "Join Us" page.
Ready to do something about it? Submitting a testimonial about Fairmount Park is a great way to start. You can also become a member of this rapidly growing collective.
As a young member of this community, I would like to display how Edgely Ultimate Fields have aided a...
I would frequently birdwatch there because it was a mature forest full of native hardwoods and flowe...
The Fairmount Park Commission was the independent Board of Directors whose mission was @quote;to pre...