"I can remember attending picnics when I was a kid put on by the Lions Club. My brother played little league baseball there. That was 50+ years ago when it was the ONLY park in Claycomo," said Michelle Moss, one of the longtime residents who fondly recalled the park's history.
The sudden announcement of the park being put up for sale has left many residents puzzled. A local resident, John Palomino, questioned the reason behind the park's closure, only to find out it's being sold. The exact reasons for the sale and the future plans for the property remain uncertain although city officials say they plan to sell to a developer.
Various speculations have surfaced regarding the possible developments that might replace the park. Linda J., an author from Claycomo, heard rumors of a potential strip mall coming up in its place, while Amy Weant, from Ravenwood Summerset, claimed to have heard about plans for an arts district. However, some residents expressed doubts about the feasibility of an arts district due to the limited space available.
The park's closure has also raised concerns among the community about the impact on the environment and wildlife. Elmari Van der Westhuizen from Ridgefield emphasized the significance of green spaces for both humans and wildlife, especially in the context of climate change.
While the reasons for the park's closure and sale remain unclear, some residents have been proactive in trying to save the park. Gary & Michele Moss signed a petition and spread the word on social media to garner support. The uncertainty surrounding the future of the park has led to questions about the length of time it will remain closed and whether tax increment financing (TIF) will be involved with the new owners.
Others, like Gabe E. from Gracemor-Randolph, see the opportunity for revitalization in Claycomo. Suggestions for new businesses like a grocery store, a decent restaurant, and a coffee shop have been put forward, indicating the community's interest in growth and development.
As the residents of Claycomo grapple with the bittersweet memories of the past and the uncertainty of the future, the sale of the park marks a significant turning point for the community. As discussions and negotiations continue, the fate of the beloved park remains in the hands of those who cherish its history and envision its future.