The city of Batesville just opened a new park on Batesville’s north side across from Batesville Tool & Die and behind the Margaret Mary Outpatient and Cancer Center located on Six Pine Ranch Road, reports Parks Commissioner Mike Baumer.

He points out, “Now the park needs a name! I invite everyone to get out and enjoy the new park and if a name comes to mind, we want to hear what it is.” Name submissions can be made online by Dec. 10 to https://batesvilleindiana.us/departments/parks-recreation/park-name-suggestion/

The link to submit a proposed name is on front page of the city’s website at https://batesvilleindiana.us and will be on the Liberty Park Facebook page.

The chosen name will be unveiled at the spring ribbon cutting after the grass is up, overlook deck completed and trees planted.

The 3-acre park offers a 0.22-mile 9-foot-wide paved multiuse trail. It has a connecting trail to the walking trail around a small pond on adjoining MMH land, and the hope is to also have a connecting trail to a small looped trail behind Batesville Tool & Die.

There is a five-vehicle parking lot, which is scheduled to be paved, off of Six Pine Ranch Road. The entire park is Americans with Disabilities Act compliant.

Baumer cautions, “Please be aware as you are traveling Six Pine Ranch Road between State Road 229 and Batesville Tool & Die that there is a new park and to watch for crossing pedestrians and bikes. Signs have been installed to warn drivers, but there is not a crosswalk, so please obey the speed limit of 30 mph and be aware of the park traffic in the area.”

The park was funded through the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund and administered by Indiana Department of Natural Resources. The required match for the $200,000 grant came from the land value of the 3 acres Margaret Mary Health generously donated a few years ago.

He notes, “The grant unfortunately did not cover all the park expenses, so the community stepped up with donations for all the amenities, including picnic tables, benches, dog waste stations, trash cans, message boards and a shelter.” All donated items have plaques attached stating the names of donor organizations, businesses and families or loved ones’ names that items were sponsored in memory of.

The playground was made possible through a donation from Lance and Ronda Green and the Belterra riverboat revenue-sharing fund. The playground equipment is unique and challenging with synthetic turf underneath.

Donations also were made for an overlook deck next to the playground to view the wetlands with various kinds of wildlife. It will be installed this winter.

A small shelter with three picnic tables next to the playground was salvaged from the I-74 eastbound rest area before its demolition. Baumer says, “Thanks to Leising Excavating and Mulch for moving the shelter for the city and to Batesville Tool & Die for allowing the parks department to store the shelter there while it was being refurbished for use.”

In addition to this new space, Batesville parks currently consist of Liberty Park, Veterans Park, Memorial Pool, Brum Woods and Weberding’s Addition Park.