Dear Ariel-Foundation Park visitors,
I am so happy to be writing this after our shared experience over the past 12 months. No doubt you share the same sense of excitement and anticipation that I personally feel as the moment draws closer for the kind of Ariel-Foundation Park summer that we all know and love to begin.
Thank you for all your patience and support during the past year as we strove to provide as many activities as possible during a very fluid and dynamic period. The Foundation Park Conservancy worked tirelessly to provide an open space that could be enjoyed by all.
Our first event this year was a wedding on March 27 that commenced our 2021 season. Each weekend it seems we have weddings and receptions celebrating life and the positivity for the future. During the week we are offering free yoga, Tai Chi, Crossfit, Zumba, and other fitness classes for all ages. We anticipate, in partnership with the Mount Vernon Arts Consortium, on July 4 to welcome back to our beautiful park thousands of visitors enjoying an exciting concert by "Face-2-Face" prior to the City of Mount Vernon’s extraordinary fireworks display! While the community concert season has been announced and, at this writing, has already begun, the following decisions have been made regarding concert access and general event policy in order to provide a safe environment for our visitors and staff, in light of ongoing pandemic concerns.
Most buildings will be closed this summer to visitors, except under special scheduling including the Urton Clock House and Knox County Foundation Pavilion. The Park National Bank Pavilion and the Kiwanis Pavilion can be reserved for use by groups/families or otherwise utilized on a first-come first-served basis. As it always has been, Schnormeier Event Center will be accessible when scheduling permits.
Peripheral areas including the bike path, the Lakes areas, Rastin Tower and Arboretum off Harcourt Road will be open for enjoyment during regular park hours.
For the 4th of July:
- Parking is available in multiple locations throughout the park
- We encourage you to utilize KAT which will run multiple buses throughout the city and from the Engergy Field lot at MVHS and the corner of South Gay and East Ohio Ave. downtown (contact KAT for exact routing)
- No one will be allowed inside Schnormeier Event Center without displaying the appropriate wrist band
- As part of our ongoing, less restrictive COVID protocols, we ask everyone to respect social distancing and interaction with staff
As you know, the pandemic situation evolves rapidly and there may be adjustments to park event visitation policies. Please watch for emails and posts on our website and social media channels for updates. In the meantime, we appreciate your cooperation and assistance in supporting these decisions.
Mark K. Fritz