Magazine article Parks & Recreation

Cunningham Park: Joplin, Missouri

Magazine article Parks & Recreation

Cunningham Park: Joplin, Missouri

Article excerpt

The historic EF-5 tornado that struck Joplin. Missouri, on May 22, 2011, devastated the entire community, but meteorologists indicate the twister's power was at its strongest in downtown Gunning ham Park, which had been a restful haven for city residents for more than a century. Prior to the tornado, the park featured tennis and basketball courts, playground equipment, picnic pavilions a walking trail and a pool but the storm razed everything to the ground leaving the community of Joplin bereft of its beloved park when it needed it the most.

Fortunately, support poured in from across the country including huge corporate grants from Coca-Cola and Walmart, and even ABC's hit show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition pitched in to lend a hand Crews broke ground last October to restore the park and build a tribute to the 170,000 volunteers who helped rebuild the city. Today, a reflecting pool sits on the site of the original playground, and the swimming pool now features multiple slides and other exciting waterpark-style structures. …

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