by Melanie Jongsma
LANSING, Ill. (November 25, 2019) – Partly in response to incidents this past summer that resulted in damage to park property, the Park Board agreed to raise park shelter rental fees and damage deposits in the coming year. At the October 21 meeting, Senior Superintendent Sharon Desjardins proposed raising the damage deposit from $100 to $150, and after some discussion about whether that increase was significant enough to cover costs without deterring rentals, the proposal was adopted. Commissioners then voted unanimously at the November 18 Board meeting to raise the park rental fee from $50 to $75 beginning January 1, 2020. The new fees were already printed in the Winter/Spring 2020 catalog.
Lan-Oak Park District offers ten rental options in six Lansing parks that showcase a variety of amenities:
- Bock Park (175th and Chicago Avenue) includes a shelter large enough to accommodate up to 150 people, surrounded by a newly installed playground, a skateboard park, basketball courts, the dog park, and a spacious parking lot.
- Erfert Park (188th and Burnham Avenue) offers three shelters that can be rented, and the park is home to a fishing pond, walking path, playground, and lot parking.
- Lan-Oak Park (180th and Oakley) is Lansing’s largest park and is home to the largest playground as well as softball diamonds, tennis courts, volleyball courts, and a horseshoes/bags pit. Rental options include two shelters located near street parking.
- Rotary Park (193rd and Sherman Street) offers two shelter options, a playground, a softball diamond, tennis courts, basketball courts, and a walking path.
- Schultz Park (Schultz Drive & Ada Street) is a spacious park with a rentable tree-shaded picnic area (no shelter) surrounded by a playground, ball diamond, and basketball court.
- VanLaten Park (183rd and Holland Drive) is home to a unique StoryWalk feature and walking path, a playground, and a softball diamond as well as a picnic shelter that can be rented.
Paying the $75 rental fee gives a resident exclusive use of the park shelter or designated picnic area from 11:00am–8:00pm, but does not reserve the public amenities of the park. Electricity is available in the shelters during the rental hours.
The $150 damage deposit is fully refunded if no park rules are violated and no property is damaged.
Lansing residents may begin making park reservations on Monday, January 6, 2020. Non-residents may reserve starting on March 1, 2020. Staff at the Eisenhower Center keep records of which parks are available on which dates. For more information about reserving Lansing parks:
- Call 708-474-8552, or
- Visit 2550 178th Street, Lansing, Illinois
That sounds like a lot to me (the deposit). We had a lot of family reunions at Erfert Park and people really liked the park and location. We always tried to leave the park cleaner that we found it. Perhaps if you have a past history with the part district they should consider that in the permit process. Both good and bad – always leaving the park clean gets a lower deposit and trashing the park gets you a larger deposit or on the do not issue a permit list.
That factored into the Commissioners’ discussion before they made the decision. In the end, they decided that because the deposit is returned in full if the park is left in good condition, raising the fee would not deter people from getting permits.
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