Upgrades at Optimist Park

A year of improvements and new amenities at West Carrollton’s Optimist Park have made the popular outdoor recreation spot more user-friendly and attractive.

“The coronavirus shutdowns caused many of us to stay away from our usual recreational gyms and indoor exercise facilities,” said Parks Director Kent Johnston. “The GreenBelt, basketball and tennis courts and many of our outdoor parks and natural areas saw high use over the last 11 months. These improvements to Optimist Park are being made due to the heavy use our outdoor spaces received.”

A rock-faced wood building with restrooms was added to the park a little more than a year ago, adding a visual design element and making the area more user-friendly. It features a small overhanging shelter with a seating wall to allow park patrons protection from the weather. 

A gravel dust walking track was paved late last year, creating a new path that is six feet wide and virtually maintenance free. 

“The walk through the forested area and along the creek that runs through the park is truly relaxing,” said Johnston. “If you have never walked in this park, you have missed a quiet place to unwind and enjoy the day.”

Tree roots had pushed up and cracked the asphalt of the park’s two 30-year-old basketball courts, necessitating a complete overhaul. The city removed the existing asphalt and fence, re-graded and re-paved the courts and installed new fencing, a final topcoat and paint job. After a short curing time, a professional-quality playing surface will be applied to the asphalt and basketball court lines added. The city is planning to install a new playground, swing set, picnic tables and trash cans in the coming months.

Many of the improvements to Optimist and other city parks were made possible by funds generated by Carroll County’s current Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax.

“We are lucky in Carrollton to have so many quality outdoor sites and amenities,” said Johnston. “The mayor, city council and city management have been proactive in the repairs and upgrades to many of our parks.”

For more information, contact the Carrollton Parks and Recreation Department at (770) 832-1161.

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