It’s not every day that we get an NFL MVP to attend a city event. But everyone seemed to enjoy having Patrick Mahomes cut the ribbon on August 28 at our newest playground at Martin Luther King Jr. Park.
The opening celebration featured drum lines, KC Wolf, pennant flags, and confetti cannons. But, of course, the Kansas City Chiefs star quarterback had everyone star struck as he cut the ribbon on our new state-of-the-art inclusive play space funded by his foundation.
“This is y’all’s park,” Mahomes told the crowd. “This is just the beginning for Kansas City’s future and the future of the kids in Kansas City, hopefully it will keep going.”
The 15 and the Mahomies Foundation donated $1 million toward the playground that was designed following a series of community engagement meetings with the intention of celebrating Dr. King and creating a place that is inclusive and accessible for children of all abilities. The area is packed with colorful components including three towers, swings, climbing nets, suspended walkway, jumping pods, spinners, embankment mound, climbing area, merry-go-round, and a section with age-appropriate play equipment and safety surfaces especially for kids ages 2-5.
Mahomes expressed amazement on how swiftly the playground was installed, “It seems that I went to training camp and came back and this thing was already up. I want to thank you for getting it done in such a quick amount of time.”
In honor of the park’s namesake, giant MLK letters are placed at the entrance to the playground and nine quotes from Dr. King’s speeches are engraved on granite pavers that surround the space. The date of the dedication was especially significant because August 28 marked the anniversary of King’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech.
The 15 and the Mahomies Playground at Martin Luther King Jr., Park is located at Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard and Woodland Avenue. It is open daily from 5 a.m. – Midnight.
EVENT & PROJECT ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS:
Artstech Unity Drum Line comprised of members from the Broadway Drill Team, Center Middle School, and the Gateway High Steppers
Glenn North, BRW Director, “A Place Fit for a King”
Gunter Construction Company, Christina, Stephanie and George Gunter and Matt Shea
Landworks Studios, Erica Flad, Jenna Fernandez and Carisa McMullen
JE Dunn Construction, donated the new picnic shelter
Sunderland Foundation, underwriting the cost of a new parking lot that is coming soon
PIAC Funding: 6th District Councilmembers Andrea Bough and Kevin McManus; 4th District Councilmembers Katheryn Shields and Eric Bunch; and 3rd District Councilmembers Brandon Ellington and Melissa Robinson
15 and the Mahomies: Executive Director Marques Fitch and Patrick Mahomes, Founder