The park originally was established in 1897 as Springfield’s first major park. The golf course was added to the property during the 1920s, and during the Great Depression of the 1930s, relief workers added the golf clubhouse, tennis courts, and horseshoe pits.
In 2015, the National Trail Parks and Recreation District, Clark County Ohio State University Extension and Master Gardeners of Clark County began the collaborative effort of preserving the property. During this time, the OSU Extension Gateway Learning Garden was relocated to the former Snyder Park Golf Course, which is now known as the Snyder Park Gardens and Arboretum.
The grand opening is to be part of the annual Snyder Park Gardens Jubilee, which was canceled in 2020 due to the pandemic.
“We are inviting everyone to come see the gardens, they’re clean, blooming, and the weeds are gone,” Bennett laughed. “The gardens are in really great shape, and this is something we’ve done every year to give back to the community with all that we have in these gardens.”
This year the celebration looks different, as the park has new additions, such as a large pavilion and new gardens to celebrate after the difficult year of pandemic.
“It’s a celebration, and it’s a bigger celebration this year because we are doing the grand opening at 9 a.m., and then we’ll have the formal ribbon-cutting for the new pavilion following a few words by dignitaries and such,” Bennett said.
Visitors can expect a full day of fun, food, live music, and learning.
“Immediately following the ribbon-cutting, there will be live music at the pavilion, there will be different vendors on-site who will be selling garden-related items. We’ll also have food trucks on hand, so people attending have access to food throughout the day,” said Bennett.
Local favorites, such as the Diamond Dogs food truck, will be at the event.
The celebration is meant to not only be a day of fun, but also a day where attendees can learn more about the park, gardening, and more.
“Our gardens will be manned by our master garden volunteers so people can visit each of the gardens, ask questions, see the plants they like, take notes, and come back anytime to select plants they’d like to use for their own landscapes,” said Bennett.
A prize drawing will also be part of the day, as an incentive for exploration of the various gardens, including the Victory Garden, and the Children’s Garden.
“There will be maps we’ll be giving out to people, and if they visit five different gardens in the park, and have their maps checked out, they can be entered for a prize for that day,” she said.
There will also be a tram for transporting visitors from the front of the park to the back, for easy access to see everything.
Admission is free. The event will be held rain or shine.
How to go
What: Snyder Park Garden and Arboretum grand opening
Where: 1900 Park St., Springfield
When: 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., Saturday, Aug 7
More info: https://clark.osu.edu/ or www.facebook.com/clarkmgvs/