Drake Park History
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Volcanoguy
N 44° 03.549 W 121° 19.147
10T E 634630 N 4879816
Sign on history of Drake Park, Bend’s first City Park.
Waymark Code: WM8AJ
Location: Oregon, United States
Date Posted: 03/03/2006
Published By:Groundspeak Premium Member Volcanoguy
Views: 14

Drake Park History sign is located along main walkway near restrooms in Drake Park.

Marker Name: Drake Park History - Bend’s First City Park.
Marker Text: While Drake Park may be named for a man (Bend founder Alexander M. Drake), it was Mrs. May Arnold and other early women of Bend who were instrumental in its establishment.
May Arnold personally gathered 1,500 signatures in a town of 5,415 people, convincing the Bend City Council to put the purchase of a park on the May 1920 ballot. The bond measure passed by an overwhelming 2-to-1 vote. Ten acres were then purchased from the Bend Company for $21,000.
Business interests also advocated for ‘a grand city park’ in Bend. Robert Sawyer, Editor of The Bend Bulletin, wrote, “the benefits to be derived from the creation of a park will more than outweigh the amount of taxation involved.” Editors of the Brooks-Scanlon newsletter, The Deschutes Pine Echoes, were more enthusiastic in their appeal stating “the park is something we should all boost for. Get Busy! Talk the matter over with your friends and neighbors! Get after the city council and keep going until a city park is established.”
In June 1920, just one month after the land was purchased, the newly founded park board organized over 50 volunteers to pull weeds and clear underbrush to improve the park. One of the first events in the new city park was a trout feed for the State Grange Convention. Over 500 people from all over the State of Oregon attended on June 1, 1920.
It would be difficult to imagine Bend without Drake Park. It was the foresight and efforts of early Bend residents advocating for the community interest and volunteering their time and resources that allows us to enjoy art festivals, concerts, and other celebrations in Drake Park today.

Historic Topic: Modern Age 1900 to date

Group Responsible for placement: City Government

Marker Type: City

Region: Central Oregon

County: Deschutes

State of Oregon Historical Marker "Beaver Board": Not listed

Web link to additional information: Not listed

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Recent Visits/Logs:
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TheBeanTeam visited Drake Park History 04/20/2007 TheBeanTeam visited it
Volcanoguy visited Drake Park History 03/04/2006 Volcanoguy visited it

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