News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Park opens at McKenzie Meadows

Sisters has a new park — and some of the people behind it celebrated its opening last week.

In lieu of their meeting on December 1, members of the City Parks Advisory Board (CPAB) gathered at the new McKenzie Meadow Village (MMV) park located in the latest Hayden Homes project in Sisters. In addition to CPAB members, representatives of Hayden Homes, Age Friendly Sisters Country (AFSC), Sisters Park and Recreation District (SPRD), and the City were present to celebrate completion of the park.

They also bade farewell to Dixie Eckford as she steps down from six years of serving on the CPAB, including two as chairperson.

Part of the master plan and subdivision applications by Hayden Homes for McKenzie Meadow Village required inclusion of three community amenities. Rather than spread them out in small pocket parks, they consolidated them into one 1.96-acre park in the center of the development.

The location of the park had originally been slated for a different site, but to save more large trees, it was moved to the center of the property. Houses face the park on all four sides, including three of the First Story homes provided by Hayden’s charitable nonprofit. The saved trees are a striking feature of the park.

As CPAB chairperson and acting secretary of AFSC, Eckford had been promoting the idea of an adult fitness park somewhere in the city. After City Manager Cory Misley put Eckford in touch with Hayden’s vice president of community engagement, Deb Flagan, plans got underway to include an adult fitness station as one of the three amenities in McKenzie Meadow Village.

Flagan watched a webinar suggested by Eckford about adult fitness installations, and she was sold — so much so, that such centers will become part of other Hayden developments throughout the Pacific Northwest, according to Flagan.

The park has large open spaces of lawn and three distinct activity areas. At one end of the park is a covered pavilion where 600 people gathered outside to visit with Santa and enjoy hot chocolate and cookies following the Sisters Christmas Parade on November 27.

Central to the park is a children’s play structure with a variety of activities including slides. At the other end is the adult fitness pad with several pieces of equipment suitable for all ages and abilities. Both the fitness equipment and the play structure are placed on a synthetic cushioned surface to reduce the possibility of injuries from falls. The park boasts a partial view of the Three Sisters Mountains.

According to Flagan, “The park will eventually be turned over to and owned by the McKenzie Meadows Homeowners Association. The park’s maintenance will be the responsibility of the HOA. At turnover, it is the choice of the members to decide if they want to hire a management company or manage the association themselves.

“A management company would handle and oversee the maintenance of the park, common areas, HOA dues collection, enforcement of HOA rules, etc. The park is accessible to the public through a public access agreement. However, it will be up to the HOA if the pavilion will be allowed to be rented to the public or they will limit its use to McKenzie Meadows residents once it is turned over,” Flagan added.

Next to the apartments that are currently under construction at MMV, Hayden plans to build a “tot park” for younger children. Three of the streets in MMV are named for the former owners of the property — Willitts, Kallberg, and Reed.


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