Improvements coming to Rhineland park

By Theo Tate
Posted 12/1/21

Stiers Memorial Park will have a new look next year.

The Rhineland park will be making improvements that will include a new pavilion, an ADA accessible playground with safety surfacing, sidewalks …

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Improvements coming to Rhineland park

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Stiers Memorial Park will have a new look next year.


The Rhineland park will be making improvements that will include a new pavilion, an ADA accessible playground with safety surfacing, sidewalks to accessible parking, storm water drainage and safety fencing along Highway 94. Construction will start as early as spring 2022.


“Hopefully, by next fall, we’re done,” said Steve Wehrle, Chairman of the Board of Trustees. “We will get a completed project. It’s not a really big project, but it’s going to be a nice one. I think it’s going to be a good deal.”


The Village of Rhineland received a $101,260 grant from the National Park Service through the Missouri Department of National Resources.


“We are very excited that after several years and several COVID-related delays we can finally proceed with this project,” said Larry Hagedorn, treasurer of the Village of Rhineland. “Many have donated and have yet to see any results, so we are excited at the prospect of actually getting some shovels in the ground next year.”


Rhineland is one of 19 communities in Missouri that will receive more than $3.3 million in federal grants to assist with park and recreation needs. The grants are part of the Land and Water Conservation Fund, a federal program that can be used to acquire, develop and renovate outdoor recreation projects.


“For the community, it’s a big plus,” Wehrle said. “If nothing else, it brings the community together. That’s what it takes.”


Boonslick Regional Planning Commission assisted the Village of Rhineland in writing the grant application to the Land and Water Conservation Fund. BRPC Executive Director Chad Eggen said the village is currently seeking an engineer to design the project.


“Everything has to be approved by DNR, so they got the approval to send out the request for qualifications and they received five submittals,” Eggen said. “Right now, they’re going through them and ranking them. Then, they’ll select an engineer and start the design work, which will be through the spring. Once it’s approved for the design by DNR, then it will go out for bid for construction. We anticipate, by the spring and summer, there will be construction going on at the park.”


Wehrle said residents have been working on improving the park for about 10 years.


“It’s just a struggle to do a couple of fundraisers and making the equipment ADA approved is astronomical,” Wehrle said. “We all put our heads together and everything. We had a pulling track down there, and it kind of went by the wayside because its sanction fees were getting so out of sight. We couldn’t make any money on it.”


Eggen said residents formed a park committee to have some fundraisers for the park project. One of those fundraisers is Pullin’ For The Park, which has been held every year since 2017.


“As with a lot of these grant programs, you can raise money at one event and do something small,” Eggen said. “If you pool your funds together and do multiple years with fundraising, you can have a larger project. I think the board saw a lot of value. They thought if we’re going to do something, let’s just do it all at the same time.”


Eggen said the area FFA and 4-H groups will help with the project.


“They’re going to help with the installation and keep it clean,” Eggen said. “They’re going to help the village with landscaping.”

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