A game of H.O.R.S.E is underway on one side of the adjacent basketball court, while on the other side a pickup game begins.
Kids learn rock climbing basics on the climbing wall, and a rendition of “Happy Birthday” can be heard from a party in the picnic pavilion.
Children leap and squeal with delight when four large spitting frogs pelt them with water.
Once an unsightly and polluted lot in an economically depressed neighborhood, John O. Green Memorial Park is now a lively public park and vital community resource. It is also the only park in the Borough of West Chester that offers a water play feature. When the weather gets warm, people from all over the borough gather at the park to keep their children cool.
The effort to create the half-acre park kicked into gear in 1998 when PECO, the landowner at the time, sold the property to the Borough of West Chester for $1. The simple plan was to create a safe place for play in a neighborhood where children had no outdoor play space other than streets and sidewalks.
First the borough had to remediate the polluted site. After the Department of Environmental Protection gave the green light for development, it was time for construction. Grant money from the Keystone Fund, combined with support from the Borough, made the project possible.
The work was completed in two phases. The first ended in 2007, and the second was finished in 2013. The process brought together community members, local officials, and religious organizations.
Today the park continues to excite and unite residents by providing a safe play space for children and a covered picnic area for family functions.