Eat your heart out, Leslie Knope. While it took the “Parks and Recreation” character almost two seasons to plan and build her park, Toledo’s upcoming PARK(ing) Day will see over 30 parks constructed in less than a day, thanks to the creativity and work of local artists, groups and citizens. As part of the title’s double meaning, the parks will temporarily be set up on metered parking spots along Adams Street, challenging park crews to be creative within a limited space.
The event started in San Francisco when design studio Rebar transformed a single parking space into a public park for two hours in 2005. The group’s goal was to revisit how public space can be utilized beyond its conventional uses. The idea quickly caught on, and only eight years later, cities around the world are now hosting PARK(ing) Days open to anyone with an idea.
This will be Toledo’s third PARK(ing) Day. Each event has been hosted by The UpTown Association, and the number of participants has steadily increased every year. Parks have been created by The Toledo School of the Arts, the University of Toledo, TARTA and The Toledo City Paper, among others. Highlights from past installations in Toledo include living statues, a “Creation Station,” a fully-stocked picnic, a string quartet, a balloon farm and a small skiff anchored outside of Manhattan’s. There will also be live music and food vendors at the event.
PARK(ing) DAY 2013 will run Friday, September 20, from 11am to 6pm on Adams Street.
Applications are still being accepted for parking spots; the fees are $100 for non-profit organizations and $200 for for-profit organizations, with all proceeds going to the UpTown Association. To apply for a park spot or find more info, visit uptowntoledo.org/parking-day or call