As of late June, Big Bull Creek Park was approaching substantial completion, but JCPRD officials will wait to set a date for a ribbon cutting event until punch list items and code inspections have been completed.
“We’re closely monitoring construction as it nears completion” said JCPRD Deputy Director Jeff Stewart. “Our project manager is visiting the site daily and communicating and coordinating with the contractors on a daily basis. Until we’ve passed all code inspections, we can’t set an opening date.”
But not having a date hasn’t kept officials from planning a ribbon cutting event for the 2000 acre park located between Edgerton and Gardner in southwest Johnson County.
A Saturday morning event is anticipated, and will include comments from JCPRD staff and board members, representatives of the Johnson County Board of County Commissioners, and a member of the 1998 campaign committee, whose success made acquisition of the property possible.
Giveaway items, including T-shirts and water bottles (while limited supplies last), are also planned, as are some light refreshments.
The public will be invited to visit all three areas of Phase I development at the new park during the ribbon cutting event.
The northernmost new development is a combined park maintenance building and Johnson County Park Police substation located just north of the intersection of Four Corners Road and 199th St. Adjacent to the facility is a new disc golf course that will be open to the public. A free disc will be given (while limited supplies last) to those that stop by the course immediately following the ribbon cutting ceremony.
“Staff will be available to give tours of the facility and to answer questions,” Stewart said. “The restroom facility in the front of that building will be open to the public during park hours.”
The nature-themed playground, located on Sunflower Road north of 207th St. in the park’s central region, will be the site of the ribbon cutting ceremony.
“We’ll station the ribbon cutting ceremony there, where people will be able to enjoy the very large nature-based playground, which is incredible and one of a kind destination playground,” Stewart said. “I can’t wait for everyone to see it,” he said. “The public will also enjoy the new looped trail, two large picnic shelters, and the four-season restroom facility that will serve park visitors.”
The nature-themed playground includes separate zones for ages five to 12, and two to five, and will be the first playground within JCPRD with seasonal water features. There’s also ample parking, although officials are also planning possible overflow parking on opening day in the city of Edgerton’s Martin Creek Park.
The final Phase I park development is a group campground near 213th St. east of Spoon Creek Road, which will be reservable by organized youth groups.
“The group camping area will have multiple camping pods, mowed pathways, as well as a large picnic shelter and four season restroom facility,” Stewart said.
It’s always hard to predict how many members of the public will attend one of JCPRD’s ribbon cutting events. In April of this year, more than 400 people attended a ribbon cutting for Antioch Park’s Dodge Town play area, and over Labor Day weekend, more than 1,000 took part in a ribbon cutting at Shawnee Mission Park’s new beach house. Despite a driving rain, in April 2017 120 people came out for Big Bull Creek Park’s groundbreaking.
“I think it will be heavily attended,” Stewart said. “The community will finally be able to enjoy what will now be the largest JCPRD park. It’s been twenty years that JCPRD has owned the property.”
Stewart added that, depending on the timing, Big Bull Creek Park facilities could be made available to the public prior to the ribbon cutting event.
“Our intention is to have it available once it is fully complete, regardless of the date we do the ceremony,” he said.
Keep watching JCPRD.com for announcements about Big Bull Creek Park