Bellevue Celebrates Reopening of Venerable Community Landmark
Elected officials, community leaders – and lots of happy children and parents – turned out for the dedication and reopening of Red Caboose Park on Saturday, August 17.
The ceremony marked the culmination of a months-long project that was years in the making. After nearly a quarter century of wear-and-tear and exposure to the elements, the park and its playground equipment were in need of a thorough makeover. The result is a fresh and inviting space for all ages in the heart of Bellevue at the intersection of Highway 70 South and Colice Jeanne Rd.
The centerpiece is a large tree house structure for children 5-12. A smaller tree house, along with age-appropriate swings and other structures, are available for toddlers. Adults will appreciate the forgiving synthetic surface that will reduce the risk of scrapes, bumps and bruises.
Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County provided major funding for the $650,000 project with the balance coming from cash donations and in-kind contributions.
Saturday’s program and ribbon cutting commemorated the community’s commitment to revitalize the park that has been a Bellevue fixture since 1982. Featured speakers included Mayor David Briley, Bellevue-Harpeth Chamber of Commerce President, Steve Blume and Acting Vice Mayor Sheri Weiner, a longtime Bellevue advocate and Metro Councilwoman who spearheaded the project.
Entertainment was provided by Bellevue singer-songwriter Les Kerr and Sgt. Henry Particelli, a Metro police officer who doubles as a singer-songwriter and is co-founder of The Good Guys Foundation.
The playground has been open since early July, but the official dedication was held off while the finishing touches were put into place.
Amenities include renovated restrooms, new benches, an updated stage and murals painted by local artists. The remodeled welcome plaza features the original Red Caboose and a walkway comprised of old and new commemorative bricks inscribed with the names of park benefactors from the time of its founding and the just-completed renovation.
Red Caboose Park is open daily from dawn until 11 p.m.