I was born in 1929, the same year Carkeek Park was dedicated by Seattle Parks Department.
My love affair with Carkeek Park started in 1945 when I was sixteen. I rode my bicycle from the West Woodland area to Carkeek to go horseback riding. The horses were kept in the Piper family’s hay field, now the site of the Annex and the Demonstration Gardens.
Fast forward to 1957. With the sudden death of my mother and the need of an extra bedroom for my dad, Les and I purchased the pioneer Ecklund home just above Carkeek Park.
In 1979, the Carkeek Watershed Community Action Project (CWCAP) was formed by local residents, funded by Metro under the Federal Clean Water Act, to help protect park and watershed resources, restore salmon to Piper’s Creek and promote education. Superintendent of Parks Walt Hundly approved of the plan from CWCAP.
In 1987, Piper’s Creek watershed was selected as an Early Action Watershed with money provided by the Washington State Department of Ecology. The $200K was used to move the Zoo Store to Carkeek Park to be our first environmental learning center
Since that time, most of the facilities and programs currently in Carkeek Park have become a reality due to my efforts with the help of other volunteers. From the Zoo Store to the Environmental Learning Center, from the salmon program to Piper’s Orchard, from the Demonstration Gardens to the play area, the development of all of these programs and features were spearheaded by volunteers.
Most of the money for these amenities came from grants that I wrote.
-April 25, 2016