City, school prep for annual Patriot Project

Volunteers and students work in a flower bed at Chisholm Trail Park as part of last year’s Patriot Project. This year’s event is set for Nov. 1. Photo / File

On Nov. 1, four Yukon city parks will be closed to the public as more than 1,000 people are expected to invade them as part of the 14th annual Patriot Project.
The event, which teams students from Southwest Covenant Christian Schools with volunteers, families and friends, and city employees to renovate three centrally located parks. They include City Park, Freedom Trail Park and Chisholm Trail Park.
The students and other volunteers will spend the day sprucing up the parks as the city prepares for its annual Christmas in the Park light display.
Parks and Recreation Director Jan Scott said this year’s project will focus on improving drainage issues.
“We will be doing a couple of big projects,” she said.
The main goal will be to repair drainage damage near the large boulders that help terrace the area to the southwest of the gazebo at Chisholm Trail Park.
Scott said that area receives much of the storm drainage that comes from a nearby neighborhood.
Over the years, she said, gullies have developed and some of the boulders have begun to shift. The goal is to restore that area.
In addition, some of the crew will work to improve the walking path near Mulvey Pond, which also has been damaged by drainage issues. Some new sod also will be laid.
Meanwhile, the normal projects that include painting curbs, replanting flower beds, weeding as well as tying ribbons around the Christmas displays will continue.
The school also generally sends a group of volunteers to an off-site park to work on a project. For the past two years, they have improved drainage and other areas at Taylor Park in northwest Yukon.
This year, the group will go to Sunrise Park on Yukon Parkway, where they likewise will address drainage concerns and will paint and do maintenance work on the softball fields, concession stand and playground equipment.
“We get to do a lot of things that we couldn’t normally do with our limited staff. It is a win-win situation,” Scott said.
The effort is a fundraiser for the private Christian school.
Last year’s effort raised more than $230,000. A portion of those funds is donated to a local charity.
Last year’s benefactor was the House of Healing, a program for teenage girls between the ages of 13 and 17.
This year, 5% of the funds will go to each REACH Ministry and the Faith Clinic.
REACH Ministry is a Bible club that operates in two Yukon apartment complexes.
The Faith Clinic is a free clinic that operates from Trinity Baptist Church each Tuesday. The clinic provides services for those who do not have insurance.
Jennifer Filippone, who serves at the Patriot Project chairman, said the organization does not set a fundraising goal. However, this year’s event is already nearing $200,000 mark.
The money will be used to help pay for equipment and materials that are outside the scope of the school’s annual budget.
“We trust the Lord with whatever he wants to provide,” Filippone said. “We are excited for both
ministries.”
Filippone also said the goal is to help local charities.

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