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Abilene group working with Parks & Rec Services to fix up Stevenson Park as pandemic drives attendance



ABILENE, TX — While Abilene Parks and Recreation Services says they’re seeing a spike in people enjoying the outdoor spaces, some say Stevenson Park needs some cleaning up.

Shawnte Flemings is a member of the Stevenson Park Committee which formed after a Juneteenth event when they realized that their park was rundown.

“Comparing that park to some of these other parks that are fixed up nice, we want that for Stevenson,” says Flemings.

Flemings wants these conditions to be addressed.

“It’s a lot of things that can be fixed, but it’s been neglected,” says Flemings.

The committee wants this to be a spot for community gatherings and a place for kids.

“When we go to Stevenson, it’s like a reunion. It’s like we have someone that is barbecuing, we have people out playing music. It’s like a celebration. We want our kids to feel safe the same way they feel at Nelson, at Sears. We want our kids to feel like they can come here and play,” she says.

Lesli Andrews from Parks and Recreation says, “We are seeing a huge increase in people going to our parks and enjoying our outdoor spaces.”

Andrews is working with the group to address their concerns.

“We have had to put more resources towards picking up trash, cleaning restrooms, you know, trying to keep the parks up and going for people,” says Andrews.

The Stevenson Park Committee, alongside the Parks and Recreation Services are coming up with a final plan and budget for what this project will be.

“It’s got so much potential in that park and it’s beautiful. We can utilize that,” says Flemings.

They are starting with their biggest task first, bathrooms.

“The bathroom right now is what’s needing the biggest renovation,” says Andrews.