A resolution recognizing the 100-Year Anniversary of the Metropolitan Parks Department.

WHEREAS, on April 3, 1901, the Tennessee General Assembly approved legislation to enact and charter the Nashville Park System; and

WHEREAS, on April 10, 1901 Mayor James Head appointed five persons to the first City Park Commission who held their first meeting on April 16, 1901 and began work with one (1) mule, a few seasonal employees, one (1) park and no money; and

WHEREAS, the new century began with Watkins Park being named Nashville's first park followed by Centennial Park in 1902; and

WHEREAS, in 1903 the City Park Commission with an annual operating budget of $25,000, employed Robert Creighton as its first Superintendent; and

WHEREAS, in 1912 Nashville saw the addition of Hadley and Shelby Parks and the first community center was added in Centennial Park in 1916; and

WHEREAS, the first public golf course opened in Shelby Park in 1924 and acquisition of the Warner Parks took place in 1926; and

WHEREAS, the 1930's officially recognized the world renown Parthenon as a permanent structure and opened its doors to thousands of visitors; and

WHEREAS, the 1940's saw construction of the first gymnasium in Elizabeth Park Community Center and the first Iroquois Steeplechase was held in Percy Warner Park; and

WHEREAS, in the early 1950's the Park System celebrated their 50th anniversary, the Nativity Scene was first displayed in Centennial Park at Christmas in 1953 and in 1954 the Cumberland Golf Course opened as Nashville's "black" golf course; and

WHEREAS, in the late 1950's saw the end of segregation of the golf courses in 1956 and Bert Elmore became the first Parks and Recreation Director in 1957; and

WHEREAS, the first meeting of the Metropolitan Board of Parks and Recreation was held on June 5, 1963; and

WHEREAS, in 1976 the Metro Nashville Parks System was selected as the most outstanding local agency in the United States and Greer Stadium home of the Nashville Sounds, opened in Fort Negley Park in 1977; and

WHEREAS, in 1978, James H. Fyke was appointed Director of Parks and Recreation and remains today in that position; and

WHEREAS, the City's first indoor ice rink, Ice Centennial, opened in December of 1979 followed by Wave Country and the Hamilton Creek Sailboat Marina; and

WHEREAS, Riverfront Park was dedicated in 1983 and became the site of the City's annual Independence Day Celebration; and

WHEREAS, the Centennial Sportsplex opened in 1990 and in the same year Athena the tallest indoor sculpture in the Western Hemisphere was unveiled in the Parthenon; and

WHEREAS, the Metro Greenway Commission was created by Council Ordinance in 1990, Ted Rhodes re-opened as an 18 - Hole Golf Course in 1994; Grassmere Wildlife Park, now home of the Nashville Zoo, was obtained by Parks in 1995; and

WHEREAS, in 1996 Metro Parks received its largest land donation in history of 1500 acres by the Alvin Beaman family and Beaman Park was dedicated for future generations to enjoy; and

WHEREAS, Shelby Bottoms Greenway opened in 1997 and 1999 saw the addition of the Predators Ice Practice facility and an indoor tennis facility at the Centennial Sportsplex; and

WHEREAS, the 21st century began with the dedication of a new McCabe Golf Clubhouse and VinnyLinks First Tee Golf Course and Learning Center in Shelby Park in 2001; and

WHEREAS, in 2001 Mayor Bill Purcell announced the City's first ever county-wide Parks/Greenways Master Plan and today Metro Parks celebrates its 100 years of existence with: 1) 93 parks, 2) 9350 acres, 3) 450 year round employees and 350 seasonal employees, and 4) 173 tennis courts, 85 ball fields, 14 swimming pools, 25 community centers, 7 golf courses, a sailboat marina, a wave action pool, 2 indoor ice rinks, 2 indoor tennis centers, a zoo, a nature center, a children's museum, a countywide greenway/trail system and a professional baseball stadium; and

WHEREAS, it is fitting and proper that the Metropolitan Council recognize the Metropolitan Parks Department on their 100-Year Anniversary.


SECTION 1. The Metropolitan Council hereby goes on record as recognizing the 100-Year Anniversary of the Metropolitan Parks Department.

SECTION 2. The Metropolitan Council Staff Office is directed to prepare a copy of this Resolution to be presented to Mr. Jim Fyke on behalf of the Metropolitan Parks Department.

SECTION 3. This Resolution shall take effect from and after its adoption, the welfare of The Metropolitan Government of Nashville and Davidson County requiring it.

Sponsored By: Ludye Wallace


Referred to: Rules & Confirmations Committee
Introduced: September 4, 2001
Adopted: September 4, 2001
Approved: September 6, 2001
By: Mayor Bill Purcell