Minturnites want to revamp park |

Minturnites want to revamp park

Tamara Miller
Preston Utley/Vail Daily Left to right, Jim Brinkerhoff, Stan Cole, Laura Wolf, and Ernie Glesner of Minturn are looking for community support to revamp the La Playuela Park.

MINTURN – Wasted potential is a horrible thing to look at.But that’s just what Pia Vidal sees when she looks at the town’s La Playuela Park.Located right by the Eagle River, Minturn’s only town park consists of a few picnic tables and some broken playground equipment. The barbecue grills don’t work either, Vidal said. “It has a lot of potential but it seems no one has done anything about it,” she said.

So Vidal is more than willing to help out a group of Minturn residents who have decided to get serious about renovating the park. Laura Wolf, who is leading the effort, said some have formed a committee and have contacted a local architect for help. They also are hosting three meetings to give park users, current and future, a chance to say what they think should be done there. “We are taking a really professional approach,” Wolf said. “We really want to listen to what people want in the park.”La Playuela Park is on Cemetery Road in Minturn. The town owns the land which is designated as open space. There has been talk about turning the parcel into community park, but funding has been scarce.

The group is applying for a $200,000 grant from Great Outdoors Colorado, also known as GOCO, a state organization that funds land conservation. “If that comes in that would be huge for us,” Wolf said. “If not, obviously that’s a big problem for our budget … but we are pretty optimistic. We are putting together a really nice site visit with GOCO in February.”The committee also is applying for a grant through the Minturn Community Fund. Vidal, who has an 11-year-old daughter, said her family occasionally goes to the park, but there isn’t much to do there right now. And the broken playground equipment is unsafe for young children, she said.

“I would like to have a set picnic area, away from the play area, and probably a bathroom would be nice,” she said. Most families go to Vail parks now, but many would like a place in town to meet with neighbors and play with their children, Wolf said. After much talk about renovating the park, Wolf said, residents just want to see it through to the end.”They want to see something happen there,” she said. “They are excited about the possibilities.”Staff Writer Tamara Miller can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 607, or, Colorado

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