Taylor Park featured in Parks and Recreation Magazine
Duluth’s Taylor Park Playground was recently featured in Park & Recreation a magazine that covers park systems nationally as part of the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA) organization. Read the article online.
The Grand Opening Celebration of Freeman’s Mill Park will take place Saturday, May 8, 2010 at 10am. Members of the board of commissioners, the Recreation Authority and active members of the community will performa Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony at 10 a.m.
The festivities will take place between 10:30a.m. and 2:00 p.m. with free kids activities, historical demonstrations, guided tours and more.
The park features a restored historic gristmill (a building in which grain is ground into flour), playground featuring replica gristmill, a half mile paved multi-purpose trail and restrooms.
According to OurTown (Snellville), “The mill was built sometime between 1868 and 1879 by brothers John Griffin Loveless and Levi J. Loveless. In 1913 W. Scott Freeman and his son, Winfield, owned it until it was purchased in 1915 by Newt Pharr. Winfield descendants continued to operate the mill through the twentieth century. In the late 1990’s the mill was placed on the National Register of Historic Places for its significance in architecture, engineering, industry, and social history. As of 1996, the mill was the only working grist mill remaining in Gwinnett County .”
Park hours are from sunrise until sunset unless posted otherwise.
Park Info: 770.822.8840
Historic Info: 770.904.3500
Location: 1401 Alcovy Road, Lawrenceville, GA 30045
MASTER PLAN (PDF Downlaod)
Where can Gwinnett’s kids go to see that groceries didn’t always come from the local grocery store? At Gwinnett County Parks & Recreation’s Freeman’s Mill Park, kids will get the opportunity to play among history.
This newest park along the banks of the Alcovy River includes a unique playground that replicates a gristmill, picnic pavilion, half-mile multi-purpose trail, parking and restroom facilities as well as the historic Freeman’s grist mill.
The mill was built sometime between 1868 and 1879 by brothers John Griffin Loveless and Levi J. Loveless. In 1913 W. Scott Freeman and his son, Winfield, owned it until it was purchased in 1915 by Newt Pharr. Winfield descendants continued to operate the mill through the twentieth century. In the late 1990’s the mill was placed on the National Register of Historic Places for its significance in architecture, engineering, industry, and social history. As of 1996, the mill was the only working grist mill remaining in Gwinnett County.
Freeman’s Mill played an important role in the local community in early Gwinnett County. Local farmers would bring their wheat and corn to the miller to be turned into flour and meal. Alcova Baptist Church, located up the street from the mill, used the mill pond for baptisms and the millhouse itself, provided a gathering place for the surrounding rural community. The water powered grist mill was preferred by many farmers because it would grind the corn more slowly than electric mills, resulting in a sweeter taste.
The mill changed hands several times over the years until Gwinnett County purchased the mill and surrounding property in 2002 with funding available from the Georgia Greenspace Program and the 2005 SPLOST. In 2009, the county raised and restored the mill and surrounding 12 acres for educational and recreational use offering Gwinnett County citizens a sense of the agricultural past.
Freeman’s Mill Park is located at 1401 Alcovy Road in Lawrenceville. Park hours are sunrise to sunset. For more information, visit www.gwinnettparks.com or call (770) 822-5178.
Master Plan (PDF)
Freemans Mill Park
Three old playgrounds at Bogan Park will be replaced with new equipment and new safety surfaces over the coming months. Upgrades will include an improved retaining wall, better drainage, shade canopies and benches.
Commissioners awarded a contract for almost $270,000 to PlayCore Wisconsin, Inc., dba GameTime/Dominica Recreation of Longwood, FL. The money to pay for it will come from SPLOST. “This is a much-needed improvement and the funds were already designated for it through the 2005 SPLOST program,” said District 4 Commissioner Kevin Kenerly.
All three playgrounds will be ADA-accessible with engineered wood fiber surfacing and concrete ramps that attach to the surfaces similar to a boat ramp in a lake. The new equipment will feature several activity panels, drums and a hand cycler. Bridges, climbers and slides will also accessible from transfer platforms for children who are able to pull themselves out of a wheelchair and onto the playground deck.
Work will be phased so that one playground will always remain open, with all three playground renovations complete by spring 2010.
The 83-acre Bogan Park, at 2733 North Bogan Road near Buford, features an indoor aquatic center, double gym, ball fields and two miles of trails. Gwinnett County parks were named best in the nation last year by the National Recreation and Park Association.
There will soon be a new Ivy Creek Greenway access trail from Buford Drive/State Route 20 near the Mall of Georgia. The existing 2.7-mile long greenway trail starts at the Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center and ends near Gravel Springs Road. The 12-foot wide asphalt multi-purpose trail will be 960 feet long, running roughly parallel to the I-85 southbound exit ramp.
JHC Corporation was the lowest of five bidders at $221,600. The construction will include a retaining wall, paving, landscaping and guardrail. A small directional kiosk will be built where the trail intersects the existing sidewalk on Buford Drive.
Community Services Director Phil Hoskins said, “This new spur trail, funded by the 2005 SPLOST program, is part of a planned network of greenway trails throughout the county.” Work is expected to begin soon once the contract is signed.
The Board of Commissioners also approved new playgrounds for Bethesda Park and Rhodes Jordan Park. The playgrounds are located within the baseball complexes at both sites. The funding for these park improvements also comes from 2005 SPLOST revenues. Hasley Recreation and Design, Inc., received the $175,000 contract to remove and replace the two existing playgrounds.