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New Non-Profit to Help City Parks

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Shelley Russell

OMAHA (KPTM)-Mayor Jim Suttle called Thursday a "great day for Omaha."

He said while Omaha continues to grow, its budget does not.

Thursday, a local group announced that they are making sure the City's parks don't get neglected.

"The work of the Omaha Parks Foundation will impact the community in many positive ways," said Suttle.

Suttle, along with City Parks Director, Melinda Pearson, formally introduced a new non-profit organization: the Omaha Parks Foundation.

"I think what we realized was that really the key to all park systems are the fact that they have a parks foundation which helps enhance the parks that are basically run and maintained by the City," said Pearson.

Pearson added that Omaha's parks take up a large area of the City – stretching over 11,000 acres and over 250 parks.

The Omaha Parks Foundation tells us they'll work to beautify parks. They'll also help raise money to start new park projects within the City.

"I think the foundation wants to be able to respond to the dreams that people have," said John Conley of the Omaha Parks Foundation.

Dreams like new recreation areas, trails and playgrounds are all on the agenda.

Pearson said, "I think in the years to come, that's where we'll see the real value in the foundation."

Conley added, "The foundation is merely a new vehicle for which all citizens can participate…and further enhance perhaps even a park in their neighborhood."

The Omaha Parks Foundation is led by a six member board: Debra Parsow, Paul Jeffrey, John Conley, Dave Ciaccio, Alicia Chavez Kroupa, Willie Pippen and Melinda Pearson.

More information about the Omaha Parks Foundation can be found at their web site: or by visiting

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