Approximately 200 Old Enfield Neighbors and guests met at the home of the Delisi family to enjoy the Annual Picnic. We are thankful to our sponsors for their generous support.
Picnic chairs Marianne Dorman and Kat Smith really outdid themselves and a good time was had by all.
Food was provided by two food trucks, and once again Capital Beverage supplied beer and wine. And of course, the Dessert Contest was highly competitive.
We would like to thank:
- Doris Cirelli, who organized the contest,
- Sheila Fleming, who assisted her on the day of the picnic; and,
- Glenda Flanagan, who invited some food stars to be our judges.
The Dessert Contest judges:
- Roy Leamon – Texas Monthly
- Johnny Guffy – Jeffrey’s
- Caroline Mitchell – Whole Foods
The Dessert Contest Winners:
- First Place – Jennifer Glass – Chocolate Seduction
- Second Place – Susan Mack – Lemon Pavlova
- Third Place – Doris Cirelli – Cheese Cake
- Honorable Mention – Marianne Dorman – Almond Cake
Thank you to Annie’s Cafe and Bar for donating extra delicious desserts to make sure we had enough.
And thank you to all the Dessert Contest participants who all brought delicious morsels and shared them!
We would also like to thank the following people who assisted in invaluable ways:
The Delisi Family who opened their beautiful home to us.
The OEHA Board who planned and worked, especially our President, Marlene Romanczak, who traveled all the way from China to help out!
Neighbors, including Tommy and Danny Matson and Reed Sallans who helped set up in the early afternoon, and those good Samaritans who helped clean up when it was over.
Babysitters: Former Murray Lane neighbor Shannon McCann organized a group of girls who included her daughter Jill and Mark and June Chandler’s daughter Katie to help with games for the young children.
Photographer: Mark Matson
Ice Procurer and Carrier: Robyn Leamon
Host gift: Jeffrey’s Restaurant
We will have a big job next year to have an event as fun as this!
Ted Eubanks, a long-time advocate of Pease Park has developed a website showcasing Pease Park, including its history, wildlife, and future plans for the park. It’s a great site and he has posted photos from the dedication of the new plaques placed at the stone entrance to the park.
Parks have a way of surviving. Pease Park is a case in point. Governor E.M. Pease gave Austin the original twenty-four acres in 1875, the first public park donated in Texas. Donation is not necessarily protection. The property of what is now the Caswell Tennis Courts (built in 1948) nearly became the site for an apartment hotel. Plans for Pease Park have included a small golf course and an elementary school. Fortunately the original deed of gift barred such uses. Parks have a way of surviving.
Pease Park has survived, but has it thrived? No. Until recently Pease Park suffered both neglect and abuse. The City of Austin has traditionally underfunded its parks, and this short fall has become egregious as parks have aged and public use has expanded. Until a few years ago Pease looked more like a bombing range than a park. Overuse by disc golfers impacted both vegetation and public use, with golfers displacing all but their kind. Trails were eroded and compacted, and many of the trees in the park were dead, dying, or damaged.
Read the rest of the story here: The park is back.
The Pease Park Conservancy has been hard at work now for four years trying to bring this special place in our neighborhood back from the brink. It has achieved a lot in that time, including 462 new shade trees, an automated irrigation system, a repaired Tudor cottage and restored retaining walls, entrance arches and picnic tables. But, it recently reached perhaps its most significant and long-lasting milestone with the establishment of a permanent financial endowment for the park with the Austin Community Foundation.
Austin philanthropist Bill Dickson made the endowment a reality with a generous $50,000 donation payable over the next five years. No funds can be withdrawn from the endowment until it reaches $100,000 and then five percent of the funds on hand will be available to the Conservancy for park maintenance and improvements that the Austin Parks and Recreation Department cannot afford. This special valentine to Austin was kicked off in a press conference at Pease on February 14, 2012, featuring special heart-shaped cupcakes from “Hey Cupcake,” balloons and attended by large crowd of neighbors, friends and well wishers. Jill Nokes, past president of the Austin Parks Foundation, made the announcement of the endowment and City Councilpersons Chris Riley and Laura Morrison symbolically accepted the gift on behalf of the City. Ms. Nokes emphasized that the “sustainability” of park improvements is the key to the long-term health of Pease Park. As the endowment grows, it will act as a “safety net” under the park to insulate it from City budget problems and economic downturns. This will help Pease avoid the typical pattern of renewal, slow decline and subsequent renewal seen in so many public spaces over time. In this regard the endowment follows the example of the Central Park Conservancy in New York City in trying to ensure that all of its hard won progress in beautification, amenities and improvements last.
You too can be a part of the endowment Plant the seeds of your legacy in Pease Park by including the endowment in your annual giving and including it in your estate planning. Governor and Mrs. Pease had remarkable foresight and vision to create a great park in the center of Austin in 1875. You can exhibit similar foresight today and ensure that Pease’s beauty is enjoyed by future generations of Austinites. Just send your check payable to “Pease Park Endowment” to the Austin Community Foundation, 4315 Guadalupe Street, Austin, Texas 78751. If you have questions, you can contact the Austin Community Foundation at 472-4483 or the Pease Park Conservancy at 925-5306. You can also donate to the Pease Park Endowment online at www.austincf.org Donations for the ongoing operations of the Conservancy can be mailed to Pease Park Conservancy, P.O. Box 50065, Austin, Texas 78763 or made online at www.peasepark.org