News Flash

JCPRD News Releases

Posted on: December 23, 2021

JCPRD Opens Three Public Art Calls for Local and Regional Artists

News Flash - Call for Artists

In accordance with Johnson County Park and Recreation District’s Public Art Master Plan, three artist calls have been opened for the intention of execution and installation in 2022. The three projects include an artist residency program with JCPRD’s Natural Resources team at Shawnee Mission Park, a mural on the south façade of Okun Fieldhouse at Mid-America West Sports Complex, and a temporary art installation at Theatre in the Park. While the residency program focuses on local Kansas City artists, the Okun Fieldhouse and Theatre in the Park calls are open to regional artists within 500 miles of Kansas City.

Interested artists may find the project descriptions and requests for qualifications at JCPRD.com/1308/Public-Art-Program. There is no entry fee associated with these calls and the application deadline is between late January and early February, respective to each project. The Johnson County Park and Recreation District’s Public Art Master Plan can be found here: JCPRD.com/DocumentCenter/View/23775/JCPRD-Public-Art-Plan_2021.

The Parks and Recreation Foundation of Johnson County will play a crucial role in the fulfillment of JCPRD’s Public Art Program through the procurement of grants and donations. The foundation continues to seek support for future projects through corporate and private funders. Those interested in becoming involved with public art initiatives are encouraged to contact Development Director Erika Seward at 913-826-3448 or Erika.seward@jocogov.org.

Johnson County Park and Recreation District has been enhancing the lives of the citizens of Johnson County for the past 60+ years through its parks, quality of programs, professionalism, and response to developing trends. The district's contributions to the personal lives of Johnson County's citizens have earned the district local appreciation and national acclaim. Each year, the district records more than 10 million park visitors and participants across its 10,000 acres of parkland, 136 miles of trails, and over 4,000 programs.

Project Summaries and Tentative Timelines

Art and Natural Resources Residency

More information: https://bit.ly/JCPRD-ANRR

The natural resources staff at JCPRD does a tremendous amount of work in JCPRD parks on land restoration - restoring prairies, woodlands, and other habitats that have been disturbed through agriculture and other previous land use, as well as by invasive species. Much of this work happens quietly through the hard work of staff and volunteers and is not widely known or understood by the public. In 2022, an artist, working closely with the natural resources staff, will be engaged to develop a public-facing project to raise awareness of this work and help people connect to it in new ways. 

December 2021Approve Project Plan and Issue Call for Artists
February 2022Artist Qualifications Due
Application Review by Art Selection Committee
Interviews Conducted for Finalists
March 2022
Winning Artist Selected
JCPRD Board Approval
April 2022
Final Schedule Outlined for Artist Residency
August 2022
Artist Residency with JCPRD Staff On-Location at Shawnee Mission Park
September 2022
Design Approved, Fabrication, Workshop Planning 
October 2022Installation, Workshop, Community Day (dates TBD)


Okun Fieldhouse Mural Project

More information: https://bit.ly/JCPRD-Okun

The Okun Fieldhouse, located within the Mid-America West Sports Complex, hosts a wide variety of adult and youth basketball and volleyball leagues, tournaments, camps, and special events. The south façade of the fieldhouse is also the backdrop for the adjacent baseball/softball fields and is highly visible from the Gary L. Haller Trail in the Mill Creek Streamway Park as well as from arriving vehicles. In 2022, a mural will be added on the south façade of the Okun Fieldhouse that tells Johnson County’s “water stories” by highlighting and celebrating the natural setting of the nearby Mill Creek and the presence of the streamway trail.

Late December 2021
 Issue Call for Artists
January 2022Artist Qualifications Due
February 2022    
Application Review by Art Selection Committee
March 2022    
Finalists Present Concept Proposals
April 2022    Winning Design Selected 
May 2022    
JCPRD Board Approval
June - September 2022    
Site Preparation & Mural Installation
September - October 2022    Mural Dedication and Community Engagement Event (dates TBD)


Theatre in the Park Temporary Art Installation

More information: https://bit.ly/JCPRD-TIP

The Theatre in the Park is located on 10 acres in the northeast corner of Shawnee Mission Park. Each summer, Theatre in the Park presents five popular Broadway-style musicals, with casts featuring actors from the surrounding community. The season culminates with Evening in the Park, an annual, free summertime party in Shawnee Mission Park featuring live music and a movie. In 2022, as an added feature to Theatre in the Park, the Public Art Program will commission a temporary public art project to add a fun, interactive, and magical component to this much-loved community tradition.

December 2021 / January 2022    Issue Call for Artists 
February 2022    
Artist Qualifications Due
Application Review by Art Selection Committee
March 2022   Finalists Present Concept Proposals 
April 2022     Winning Design Selected, JCPRD Board Approval
April / May 2022    
Finalize Design and Fabrication
June 2022    
Installation / Artist Led Program (dates TBD)
August / September 2022    Deinstallation 


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