Buncombe County has announced recipients of its 2022 Community Recreation Grants. Nineteen local nonprofits will split nearly $100,000 for projects that build momentum for long-term change in the community. Grants range from $2,022 to $6,000 and build on countywide initiatives that align with the Buncombe 2025 plan.
“COVID-19 has changed the way we think about parks and recreation,” says Peyton O’Conner, Director of Buncombe County Recreation Services. “Strengthening relationships with these and other community partners allows us to more fully deliver on Buncombe County’s promise that everyone from infants to retirees has safe, equitable access to high-quality parks and recreational experiences – and the mental, physical, economic, and cultural benefits that come with that access.”
This diverse group of projects represent a dedication to improving the health and resiliency of all residents through inclusive access to recreational, fitness, and wellness activities offered to the public for free or at low cost. For most projects, additional funding sources have been secured to cover the total amount.
- Asheville Black Bears – $5,957 to revitalize Charles D. Owen Park softball and tee-ball fields in Swannanoa
- Asheville Buncombe Youth Soccer Association – $6,000 to expand access to soccer goals in underserved areas of the county
- Asheville GreenWorks – $6,000 to build a new greenhouse and expand Sand Hill Community Orchard at Buncombe County Sports Park in Enka-Candler
- Asheville Tennis Association – $6,000 to provide equipment used for tennis education programs serving BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) community members, people with disabilities, and youth from low-income households at locations throughout the county
- Bent Creek Community Park – $3,872 to expand trailhead connections to the Blue Ridge Parkway and Bent Creek Experimental Forest and build a multi-generational cycling service station near the pump track at the park in Bent Creek
- Bountiful Cities – $3,680 to expand composting operations at community gardens throughout the county
- Colaborativa La Milpa – $5,997 to enhance and expand Los Arroyos (The Streams), an outdoor recreational and cultural space in Emma
- Friends of Hominy Creek Greenway – $6,000 for repairs to Hominy Creek Greenway in West Asheville
- Friends and Neighbors of Swannanoa – $4,280 for equipment to host outdoor multi-media events including the Cinema on the Square and Groovin’ on Grovemont series in Swannanoa
- Hall Fletcher Elementary School PTO – $6,000 for a new shade structure at the school’s public playground and outdoor basketball court in West Asheville
- Irene Wortham Center – $4,464 to construct a wheelchair-accessible path for community members with disabilities to the fitness and wellness therapy building at its care center in Shiloh
- LEAF Global Arts – $6,000 for supplies and equipment to offer expanded LEAF Schools & Streets youth-focused global arts and cultural preservation programs in community centers and after-school programs throughout Asheville
- Open Doors of Asheville – $5,900 for supplies and equipment used in enrichment and education programs to eliminate race-based opportunity and achievement gaps for local students
- Ox Creek Community Club – $2,022 to replace outdoor picnic tables at the community center in Weaverville
- Sandy Mush Community Center – $6,000 for playground safety enhancements, picnic tables, pickleball equipment, and indoor recreation equipment at the community center in Sandy Mush
- Shiloh Community Association – $6,000 to create a legacy mural honoring Asheville’s oldest African American community and repair masonry work in the outdoor amphitheater and culinary classroom at Shiloh Community Garden and Pavilion
- Spring Mountain Community Club – $4,500 to install a drainage system for the walking path at the community center in Fairview
- Swannanoa Community Council – $6,000 to install a rubberized pathway within Grovemont Park in Swannanoa
- Western North Carolina Disc Golf Association – $6,000 for tee pad repair and erosion control at the Richmond Hill Park disc golf course in Asheville
To receive the I Heart Parks monthly newsletter, sign up online. Follow Buncombe County Recreation on Facebook and Instagram.