Last week we featured Ames’ “Super Park,” – Prairie View Industrial Center. Lucky for our community, Prairie View isn’t the only Super Park in town! With over 50 different recreational facilities from pools to the community center to parks, Ames’ newest park brings a fresh sense of inclusivity, thoughtfulness and fun to our community.
The Ames Miracle Playground and Field opened last October and is our first 100% accessible playground. Not only does it feature rubberized turf for safe and easy access for all, it also offers Swing Alley, Mushroom Cove (for young kids), Slider’s Canyon (for older kids), Spinners Squall, Miracle Field, Acorn Music Hall, a picnic area and a sensory plaza. Say it with me, WOW!
With so much to do in the park, there’s no doubt children of all ages will gleefully explore every nook and cranny. Visitors are welcomed by one of two signs – “Let Miracles Happen” and “Miracles Happen Here.” Who knew you could feel so inspired by a quick trip to a neighborhood park?
The project raised over $2.3 million, $700,000 more than the park’s original price tag. What does that tell us? That as a community, we were so united, we were so committed to offering this amenity to residents and visitors, that we came together and we made it happen.
If you haven’t visited the park yet, add it to your weekend to-do list. I promise, you don’t have to be a kid to appreciate it.
Earlier this month, Ames received a $1.5M grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) to construct critical water and sanitary sewer infrastructure for the Prairie View Industrial Center in east Ames. This is a huge win for our community and the site and will be to our advantage as we attract new business to our area.
This isn’t the first time Prairie View has made headlines. In 2019, the site was designated a Certified Site through the Iowa Economic Development Authority’s certification program. Of the 27 certified sites in the state, Prairie View is one of two to be designated as a Super Park. Super Parks must have at least 500 acres of land—Prairie View is over 1,300 acres with 730 under purchase option.
As we work to bring economic development projects to the community, it’s not uncommon for projects to need 50, 100, 300 acres or more. We now have the capacity to meet and exceed expectations for large-scale projects. Combine this asset with the other business parks in the Ames and Story County marketplace and unique partnership opportunities with Iowa State University and we are in an enviable position for businesses looking to relocate or expand.
What does this mean for Ames? In a word, growth. When a new company move to town, it triggers a chain reaction. The construction industry picks up as facilities must be built. Job growth skyrockets as there are new opportunities for positions at all levels. People move to town to take new jobs and start spending their money here. Our Super Park is positioned to spark tremendous growth in our community in way we’ve not experienced yet.
Changemaker—what a powerful-sounding world. Are all Changemakers some kind of boat-rocking, swim-against-the-current kind of folk? What is a Changemaker and how do I become one?
The beauty of being a Changemaker is that there is no one definition. Changemakers are builders, networkers, nurturers, resisters, communicators, investigators and more. Changemakers are those who are ready to pull up their sleeves and get down to business. You can be a Changemaker and so can I.
These are our most practical friends. The ones who love math and science. The ones who quietly think and then offer up a completely thought-out idea. Building an inclusive playground in four-season community? Get a Builder on your team.
The ever-loving, little-engine-that-could people who keep us going. They are thinking about everyone’s well-being more than anything else. Hosting a day-long fundraiser? The Nurturer will be the one bringing you snacks and water to help keep you going.
Otherwise known as the extrovert. They’re the ones who have a guy (or gal!) for everything. Need a speaker for an upcoming event? Odds are the Networker’s cousin’s friend’s brother’s mother-in-law could do it.
These are the objective thinkers. The ones who see and relish the many colors around us. The Communicator might challenge your thought process, but they will take the time to listen and help work toward a creative solution for the greater good.
No, not the two-year-old who refuses to nap. The Resister is on the frontlines. They pave the way for future generations through action. They lead with a dynamic influence and will always be there when you need them.
The detective of the group. You might not even realize when they're analyzing and deducing but you can count on them to think outside the box, expose problems and pose solutions. Think of them as your resident Sherlock Holmes.
Now that you have an idea of which Changemaker Archetype you are, it's time to shake, rattle and CHANGE! Join us for our Changemaker Series by registering for the first event today!
Written By: Greg Piklapp, City of Boone Councilmember
Boone is a community that represents rural Iowa in everything; past, present and future. Our founding was based on farming, railroad and coal, grew in the early 20th Century with connected mercantile and local business expansion, the 1980s Farm Crisis and impacts starting a stagnation that changed it forever. But the future is our focus now and our community is experiencing growth not seen in decades.
We take pride in being the hometown and headquarters for Fareway Stores Inc. We have 21st Century fiber connections to help telecommuters and small business start ups. A strong focus on our historic downtown main street revitalization with building grants, new business and retail development support. A vibrant school district with new elementary, middle school and high school buildings working in STEM and trade skill programming. Our local DMACC campus has recently expanded with new sports facility upgrades as well and we work hard to forge local partnerships across age differences, political affiliations, between long time families and new arrivals.
Community publicized rankings in 2019:
A lot of hard work has taken place to gain this momentum and it hasn’t stopped. Quality affordable housing options are available in brand new construction or historic renovations. The City is making million dollar investments towards infrastructure upgrades, partnering for expansions in our industrial park with railroad access and helping drive growth in good paying jobs from building trades to cutting edge agriculture bio-sciences. We are only 15 minutes from the Iowa State University Research Park and the cutting edge work being accomplished. Boone also has over a dozen local parks, with nearby attractions that include boating/canoeing in Des Moines River Valley, beautiful campgrounds, historic Ledges State Park, even winter skiing and more booming tourism attractions including a new hotel and conference center.
We have a lot to offer, be ready to call Boone home!