For its size, McPherson has a remarkable parks system.


For its size, McPherson has a remarkable parks system.
From Memorial to Linnea, Challenger to Hess, McPherson’s public spaces cover more than 200 acres of property throughout the city. Lakeside and Wall parks alone cover more than 100 acres, providing a massive space in the middle of town for tennis, volleyball, Frisbee, disc golf, baseball, skateboarding, fishing, walking, and pretty much any outdoor activity one can conceivably do in the middle of Kansas. The trees in the parks are mature, the waters relaxing and flowers and grass always well-manicured.
Both in terms of acreage, facilities and maintenance, McPherson excels beyond many comparably-sized towns in the state. That level of excellence is made possible through both the diligent work of the McPherson Parks Department and the attention generations of city commissioners have devoted toward maintaining McPherson’s public spaces.
While the most obvious way to support city parks is simply to get out and use them, McPherson residents (and guests alike) have a rare opportunity to let the world know just how wonderful their parks are. The Convention and Visitors Bureau has registered Lakeside Park for participation in Coca-Cola’s “live positively” campaign. Anyone interested in supporting Lakeside can go online to livepositively.com/parks and vote for the park or check in from the park through Foursquare for even more votes.
While sitting in the park with a smartphone in your face casting votes may seem to go against the purpose of a park, time spent voting is well worth it. The American park with the most votes at the of the campaign on July 15 will receive a $100,000 grant. Second- and third-place winners also receive substantial awards.
McPherson has great public spaces. By voting for Lakeside Park, residents can bring national attention to a local treasure and help the city creep closer toward grants that could be used to further improve an already valuable resource.

— Ken Ward, on behalf of The McPherson Sentinel Editorial Board