– By Darlene Wayt, Friends of Jaycee Park
Welcome back to Houston, Aimee Barlow and family! In 2009 when Ileana Desalos began canvassing and organizing the neighborhoods to renovate Jaycee Park, Aimee Barlow was one of the first residents to step up and put forth a lot of work and time toward the effort.
Although partnered with Houston Parks Board, a large portion of the private funds raised for the revitalization came from the efforts of local volunteers like Aimee. Aimee designed the early flyers and created the Facebook page to get news out to the neighborhoods about meetings and fundraisers. Under Ileana’s overall supervision, Aimee organized volunteers for the first coin drive, our first event which raised about $10,000, showed Houston Parks Board we were serious and snowballed into other volunteers coming onboard.
In 2010, even with the news that her husband’s work would take their family overseas for at least three years, Aimee helped plan two future fundraisers, one of which was our second coin drive that September. With a million things to do to get ready for their move, Aimee still found time to walk blocks to raise funds for the park.
This past July 4th for the Ice Cream Social that was held in Jaycee Park, we needed a leader for the parade. Although they had only been back in their house for a few days, Aimee’s husband and son, Darren and Wilson, generously volunteered. Wilson is a boy scout with Troop 40. Daughter Avery is an accomplished equestrienne and animal lover. So, welcome back to Jaycee Park supporters Aimee & Darren and Wilson & Avery Barlow.
That’s a bit of recent history about the private fundraising effort that took place from 2009-2012.
As for news about the Capital Improvement Project public funds allocated for our park in 2015, in an email response to an early August query to Lisa Johnson, Parks Program Manager: The consultant is working on cost estimates for the priority items discussed at the 5/13/14 Community Meeting and looking at options that will fit the budget. At the May meeting, Ms. Johnson invited direct contact with her at email@example.com or (832) 393-8081.