Parties For The Park Is Back!

Does it feel that summer party you wanted to have never quite happened? CELEBRATE in autumn. The wait is over–we’re unveiling our Parties for the Park fundraiser series today and tickets are on sale now! We’ve got virtual parties, an outdoor party and a silent auction for a week-long stay at this fantastic Sugar Mountain vacay home:

Sugar Mountain vacation house silent auction

Parties for the Park is Durham Central Park’s annual fall fundraiser. The funds raised through Parties for the Park provides 30% of the operating budget for Durham Central Park Inc., a 501c3 not-for-profit organization.

For more than 22 years, we have built the infrastructure that makes the DCP beautiful, accessible, functional, comfortable and welcoming to the entire community. The funds raised from Parties for the Park have supported many projects over the years including continuation of our PLAYlist Concert Series, the installation of benches, tables, gardens, trees and art, Mt. Merrill and our newest feature, a larger-than-life troll sculpture and Troll Trail. Additionally, the funds help to cover the usual costs for staffing, maintaining, and programming the park.

By buying tickets to these parties, you will be helping to keep Durham Central Park a vibrant and accessible community space:

Trivia Night with Arturo Sanchez #1, Sept 30
Trivia Night with Arturo Sanchez #2, Oct. 1
A Tour of Italian Wines… From Home!, Oct 9
Deep Fried Swap Meet Hootenanny, Oct 10
Take and Bake! An Italian Meal to Warm the COVID Heart, Oct 18
Kingfisher Presents: Real Cocktails/Virtual Party, Oct 22

Read all about the parties at PartiesforthePark.org

The silent auction for the Sugar Mountain Vacation Home (pictured above) will be live from October 14-18.

If Zoom or in-person parties aren’t something you are up for right now, but you want to just have a party or picnic with close friends, family or Quaranteam and make a donation to DCP, that is also wonderful.

NEW addition to Durham Central Park

Down by the creek and under the bridge at Durham Central Park, a new trail is taking shape! The trail will run from Mt. Merrill down to the creek, under the bridge and back up to Hunt Street. It is designed to add shaded play area and make the creek more accessible for kids and grownups. The creek will be lined with large boulders to both stabilize the creek banks and allow for easy creek exploration.

But, it’s not JUST a trail… the Cardinal and Turtle will be getting a new friend! When the trail is finished, a new, custom, climbable sculpture will be installed next to the trail. Right now, the sculpture is being built in the Liberty Arts Foundry in the park by WallerFoushee Studios (of Major The Bull fame). Next time you are visiting the park, take a peak into the Foundry and see if you can guess who it will be.

Increasing shaded, playable area in Durham Central Park has been in DCP Inc.’s Master Plan for many years. Thanks to the generosity of the Evans Family, this trail and our new friend will be coming to the park later this summer for everyone to enjoy! Durham Central Park is a 5-acre city owned park located in the heart of Downtown Durham. The park is managed, developed and programmed by Durham Central Park, Inc. a 501c3 non-profit organization.

DCP Rocks Bingo!

Durham Central Park rocks and we’ve got your second themed park bingo/scavenger hunt ready! At your leisure, and following physical distancing and face mask mandates, come to DCP with this “rock” and why “DCP rocks” bingo card. Post your pictures of what you or the young people in your life discover.

Durham Central Park is a 5-acre city owned park located in the heart of Downtown Durham. The park is managed, developed and programmed by Durham Central Park, Inc. a 501c3 non-profit organization. Our Mission: Providing Space for Community.

Durham Central Park is a place filled with natural beauty and man-made wonders. Yet, in a way, it is also a blank canvas—an empty stage ready to be the setting for your story.

Our mission is providing space for community, which means a number of things including:

–Continuing to maintain and improve an already amazing urban park;
–Working hard to ensure that the park is accessible to everyone;
–Hosting enjoyable, free events to enliven the park and enrich the community;
–Offering an affordable and attractive venue in the heart of downtown; and Safeguarding a place for people to gather in celebration or rally around a shared belief, meet up with friends or just be alone for a moment, appreciate public art or simply play in nature—a place for Durham to be Durham.

If you haven’t had a chance to play the first in our series, Pollinator Bingo (in honor of Pollinator Week last month, and Durham’s status as a Bee City, you can access the bingo card here

PLAYlist Concert Series Announcement

PLAYlist Concert Series Announcement: we were excited to share this year’s PLAYlist Concert Series lineup with you but, after much consideration and consultation with the City of Durham, NC Government, we have decided to cancel our 2020 PLAYlist Concert Series (June-Sept) in order to protect public health amid the #COVID-19 pandemic. We will miss gathering and the camaraderie of these concerts but feel that the risk and uncertainty is too great at this time. Photo credit Ryan Moeller Photography, 2018. #DurhamNC

Durham Central Park Update Regarding COVID-19

Dear Friends,

We have been working closely with city officials to determine the best plans for keeping our community safe at Durham Central Park during the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, we are following the city and state guidance and all of the scheduled events at Durham Central Park are cancelled through April 10th, including the March 22 Food Truck Rodeo and the Durham Farmers Market. As this is a rapidly evolving situation, we will continue to monitor and follow the leadership of city and state government and keep you posted of any changes.

As of now, Durham Central Park and the parks in the Durham Parks and Rec system are open. You are welcome to take walks, enjoy the sunshine, and smell the flowers. It is a beautiful time of year and in the midst of this uncertainty, enjoying nature in a socially distant and responsible way can help.

If you are a patron of the Durham Farmers’ Market and want to get food from local farmers, sign up for their newsletter. The Durham Farmers’ Market Manager is working with their vendors on ways to connect people with local farmers and vendors for food deliveries at this time. DFM will be sending out information through their newsletter regularly.

We are still working on DCP’s summer event schedule and planning on moving forward with our summertime events. Our next Food Truck Rodeo is scheduled for June 21. Our PLAYlist Concert Series is set to start on June 12 and run every other Friday through September 18. Not to mention, our Children’s Fourth of July parade is still in the works! We’ll share more details about all of these events soon and if anything changes, we’ll let you know.

These next few weeks and months will be a hardship for everyone. Remember to look after your community as you can – your family, friends, neighbors, local businesses and the non-profits that help to make the Durham community vibrant, healthy, connected and safe. We look forward to enjoying the park together very soon.

Warmly,
Erin Kauffman
Durham Central Park Executive Director

ENJOY THESE GARDEN VIEWS AT THE PARK
Left to right (starting in the top left corner): peach blossoms, ipheiondaffodils with a bit of grape hyacinth and hellebore in our Grace Garden.
Need a Breath of Fresh Air? You Can Visit Durham Central Park.
Help Sustain Durham Central Park 

Durham Central Park is a 5-acre park that is managed, developed and programmed by Durham Central Park, Inc., a 501c3 non-profit organization. Our mission is providing space for community. We work hard to provide the community a beautiful, safe, vibrant and welcoming park in downtown Durham. To do all of this, we rely on generous donations from people like you. You can help support and sustain this vital community space through this uncertain time.

Become a friend of the park today. You can support Durham Central Park by:

Click Here To Donate Online
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Can you imagine Durham without Durham Central Park?

Can you imagine Durham without Durham Central Park?

Cardinal Campaign 2019
A personal letter and preview of what’s to come, 2020 from DCP Executive Director, Erin Kauffman.

 

Two decades ago, the Park was an audacious proposition. Today, it is a destination, a gathering space, a community center, a beloved constant in an ever-changing city. Every week, thousands of people visit Durham Central Park for a myriad of reasons; fresh food, entertainment, exercise, recreation, relaxation, or as a meeting place. No matter how you interact with the Park, you have likely noticed that it serves many purposes and transforms seamlessly from one event or activity to the next. The Park provides a space for creativity in our community and plays a key role in shaping the culture and identity of Durham.

Durham Central Park is managed, developed and programmed by DCP, Inc, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Though the land is owned by the city, DCP, Inc. receives no public funding to operate the park. Every year, we rely on the generosity of donors, like you, to keep this park fun, functional, and beautiful for every Durham resident and visitor to enjoy. Can you pitch in during this giving season to help us reach our goal of $50,000 for our general operating fund and build a solid foundation for the new year? Here’s how: https://durhamcentralpark.org/donate/

Vibrant Crosswalk Designs to be installed on Foster Street Nov. 19-21

Durham, NC— Three vibrant Art-Deco inspired pedestrian crosswalk designs will be installed on Downtown Durham’s Blackwell, Corcoran and Foster Streets on November 19 – 21, 2019.  The ground plane art is the third major project of the Durham SmART Vision Plan — connecting the cultural hubs/districts in downtown Durham through creative placemaking. Local artist Mary Carter Taub designed the Pedestrian Crosswalk installations for three locations: American Tobacco Campus at Blackwell/Vivian St., Durham Armory to Marriott/Convention Center on Foster Street; and Durham Central Park at the Farmers’ Market crossing on Foster Street.  The design will be professionally applied with a specialized colored resin including non-skid aggregate in eight bright colors.

A public dedication of the Crosswalks will take place on Saturday, November 23, from 10:00 am – 12:00 noon adjacent to the crosswalk in Durham Central Park, 501 Foster Street.  Artist Mary Carter Taub will be on hand to lead visitors in a free participatory “cross chalking” art project on the street.  For more information, visit www.smartdurham.org.

Artist Mary Carter Taub states: “The pedestrian crosswalks are a freewheeling riff loosely inspired by Memphis design, a blend of Art Deco and Pop art, blending geometric shapes found in downtown Durham’s local Art Deco architecture with an ‘80s palette bursting with color. The crosswalks are titled   Snapping!Crackling!,  and Popping!  inspired by the Rice Krispies cereal characters Snap, Crackle and Pop who were created in the ‘30s, and – fast forward to the 1980s – weighed heavily in my rotation of childhood breakfast cereals.  Snapping! is the American Tobacco Campus -DPAC crosswalk,  Crackling!  is the Armory/Marriott crosswalk and Popping!  appears as the Durham Central Park crosswalk.” (See images of the designs below)

The Durham SmART Vision Plan focuses on transforming the North/South Corridor of Blackwell/Corcoran/Foster Streets through creative placemaking. The plan, created with internationally renowned urban designer and public artist Mikyoung Kim, is a multi-year, $10 million public art and urban design strategy for Durham.   The North Carolina Arts Council, National Endowment for the Arts, Durham Arts Council, City of Durham, Durham County, Capitol Broadcasting Company, Downtown Durham, Inc., Duke University, Nasher Museum of Art, and a local SmART Resource Team of key stakeholders and arts professionals are partners in planning and implementing the public art projects and place-making strategies along the SmART corridor.


DURHAM SmART PROGRAM 

Durham is one of four pilot communities chosen to be part of the North Carolina Arts Council’s SmART Program, which supports arts-driven economic development projects.  Since 2012, the N.C. Arts Council has provided staff resources, public art consultants and significant funds to create a plan for downtown Durham’s Blackwell, Corcoran and Foster Street corridor. The plan connects three distinct city districts along the corridor – American Tobacco, City Center and Durham Central Park respectively, and includes projects for improving pedestrian access and artfully-designed public spaces to support greater participation for residents and visitors in the rapidly transforming corridor.

The first project, the Corcoran Street Garage Art Wrap, was designed by public artist Olalekan Jeyifous. “Durham in Continuum” was completed in summer 2018, and was recognized as one of the 50 outstanding public art projects in 2018 by the Public Art Network of the Americans for the Arts.

Noa Younse and Jennifer Hiser were selected to create a second public art installation along the Durham SmART corridor titled “A Story Goes On” which is an interactive pixel wall mural in Durham Central Park. The Pedestrian Crosswalk Art is the third and current Durham SmART Vision Plan project.


SmART Vision Plan:
  https://files.nc.gov/ncarts/DurhamSmARTVisionPlan.pdf

Mikyoung Kim Design:  http://myk-d.com/

Durham SmART Funding Partners for the Ground Plane – Pedestrian Crosswalks

Funding partners for the SmART Pedestrian Crosswalks include the National Endowment for the Arts “Art Works” grant, the North Carolina Arts Council, Durham Arts Council (lead local agency), the City of Durham, Capitol Broadcasting Company/American Tobacco District; Downtown Durham, Inc., Durham County; plus technical support from Durham Area Designers, and Discover Durham,  and additional public/private partners.  For more information, visit www.smartdurham.org

About the Artist Mary Carter Taub  

Artist Mary Carter Taub was selected for the Crosswalk project from among 27 artist applicants in the Triangle area. She conducted extensive research on the history and landscape of the downtown Durham corridor and its architecture and landscape as part of her design process.  She also engaged with more than 130 community members at public events to gain feedback and inspiration for the crosswalks.

Mary Carter Taub received her MBA from the School of Global Management, Arizona State University; an MFA from the School of Visual Arts, New York, NY; and a BA from Meredith College, NC.  She has been selected for numerous public art projects including the Master Planning Team for new neighborhood parks in Cary, NC; Fort Worth, TX Public Art program; San Francisco Arts Commission Bay Area Discovery Museum; Nashville International Airport;  Iowa Art in State Buildings Program; Scottsdale, AZ Public Art Program; the North Carolina Arts Council Mary B. Regan Community Artist grant; Piedmont Triad International Airport; City of Raleigh; Town of Chapel Hill and Chapel Hill Transit, and four projects for the Orange County Arts Commission.   She has also been artist in residence at Glassmalerei Peters (Peters Studio), Paderborn, Germany; Parsons School of Design, La Romana, Dominican Republic; University of Wisconsin; and Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture, Skowhegan, Maine.  For more information, visit  www.marycartertaub.com

Artist Concept Inspiration

The crosswalk designs are informed by shapes, patterns and compositional elements found in several local Art Deco buildings such as the Hill building (Sun Trust/ 21c), NC Mutual Life building and the Kress building. The decision to use a brightly colored palette was validated at a community engagement event on June 8, 2019 at the Durham Central Park Farmers’ Market; the consistent feedback was to use colors, “the brighter, the better,” and to “give life to dead intersections,” and raise safety awareness where “folks don’t know the drill for traffic patterns and pedestrian flow.”  The artist created designs to visually shake up the status quo.

Crosswalk Designs are inspired by iconic buildings in downtown Durham

Hill Building 1937               KRESS Building 1933                      NC MUTUAL LIFE Building left:  original location 1921

                                                                                                         Right:  current location since 1968

Liberty Arts and Durham Central Park Present 4th annual Iron Pour November 16

Liberty Arts Studios & Foundry and Durham Central Park present their 4th annual public Iron Pour at Durham Central Park, Saturday, November 16 from 4-9 p.m. All evening and into the night, 4,000 pounds of molten iron will be poured into molds, in an exciting fiery display creating the iron tiles made by the public and sculptures made by NC artists. Additionally, there will be Liberty Arts artists’ work for sale, Liberty Arts T-shirts, beer glasses and hand-blown glass pumpkins. Come enjoy drumming performances from Batalá Durham, local food trucks and craft beer while watching this very creative and gritty Durhamesque event.

You can really get involved by creating your own scratch block in an upcoming workshop. Scratch a design into hardened sand and watch it get filled with molten iron. The result is an iron tile created by YOU. The cost is $40 per mold. You will be able to take home your iron tile from 1 to 4 p.m., Sunday the 17th at the Liberty Arts Foundry at the park, across Foster Street from the pour site.

2019 scratch block workshop schedule:

  • September 25, 4:30 – 7 p.m.

  • October 2, 4:30 – 7 p.m.

  • October 5, 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

  • October 8, 4:30 – 7 p.m.

  • October 12, 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

  • October 16, 4:30 – 7 p.m.

  • October 19, 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

  • October 30, 4:30 – 7 p.m.

  • November 2: 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

  •  November 3, 12:30 – 3:30 p.m. (during the Food Truck Rodeo)

  •  November 6, 4:30 — 7 p.m.

  •  November 9, 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

  •  November 13, 4:30 – 7 p.m.

  •  November 16, 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. (Day of Pour)

  • November 16, 12:30 – 2:30 p.m. (Day of Pour)

We’ve got everything you need. Just bring your imagination and get ready to have some fun. Admission to the Iron Pour is free.  Blankets and folding chairs welcome. Food trucks and breweries will serve from 4-9 p.m. To kick off the event, Batala will perform 2 sets between 4 and 6 pm.  Scheduled food trucks/brewers include Poblanos Tacos, Bulkogi, Bull City Burger and Brewery and Ponysaurus. For more information, visit www.durhamcentralpark.org. You can sign up for a scratch block workshop online at www.libertyartsnc.org/classes. Have questions? Contact Liberty Arts at [email protected] or call (919) 294-8006.

 

Liberty Arts Inc., a 501(c)(3) organization is a combination of artist studios on Pearl St and a foundry on Foster Street.

The foundry was created to bring awareness of and access to public art into the heart of Durham.

Durham Central Park is the five-acre downtown oasis on Foster Street. DCP is a city-owned park that is managed and developed by Durham Central Park, Inc., a 501(c)(3) organization.

FAQ for Parties For The Park: Tickets on sale Friday!

 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Parties for the Park?

It is a series of parties and event from September to November that DCP enthusiasts host at their home, restaurant or other venues. The parties have different themes, prices, and numbers of attendees. All the parties are donated by the hosts and the ticket sales go straight to DCP, Inc.

Who gets the money from the Parties for the Park ticket sales?

All of the money from the ticket sales goes directly to Durham Central Park, Inc.

What is the money used for?

The funds raised through Parties for the Park make up about 1/3 of DCP Inc.’s annual operating budget. The money pays for DCP staff, maintenance and improvements of park structures, free programming and special projects.

What are this year’s special projects?

In 2020, we will focus our efforts on re-making the Sister Cities Grove (the area north of the Pavilion). That area has been in flux for the past 2 years with recent construction and city waterline upgrades. To make this area of the park comfortable and welcoming, we will be installing new trees, new benches & tables and updated signage. In 2020, we will also be installing plantings in the newly built terraced planting beds behind the Pavilion. In addition to supporting DCP’s operating funds, money raised through the 2019 Parties for the Park will support these special projects.

Is my ticket considered a tax-deductible donation?

No. The laws surrounding this are complex. We work with the hosts to price the events close to fair market value. We will continue to explore this and may be able to change it in the future.

What is the processing fee?

In order to use ticket processing services, like Eventbrite, there are fees associated with safe processing of information. Since these events are fundraisers for DCP, Inc., a 501c3 non-profit organization, we truly appreciate your support in paying the processing fees in order to ensure that the funds from the ticket sales are used to support the operation, programming, and improvement of Durham Central Park!

Do I need a physical ticket for the events that I’ll be attending?

No. When you purchase your tickets through Eventbrite, your name will be added to the guest list. All of the hosts will have the guest lists and will welcome you when you arrive.

After I purchase my tickets, will I be sent any additional information?

Yes. The week of the event, we’ll send you additional info about your event, where to park, how to get there, and any other pertinent information that you may need to easily and successfully get to your event. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Erin at [email protected]

Who do I contact if I have questions about the event?

Please feel free to get in touch with Erin Kauffman, Durham Central Park’s Executive Director. She can be reached at 919-794-8194 or [email protected]

Can I host a Party for the Park next year?

Absolutely! If you are interested in learning more about hosting, please get in touch with Lee Ann Tilley, the Parties for the Park Chair at [email protected]