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Portland Timbers, Thorns FC invest $65,000 in Thomas Cully Park, help transform new public park in Northeast Portland

PORTLAND, Ore. – The Portland Timbers and Portland Thorns FC have contributed $65,000 to the Portland Parks Foundation to help kick off a $500,000 campaign for private support to complete funding for phase one of the new Thomas Cully Park in Northeast Portland, it was announced today.  

The new park, located on Northeast 72nd Avenue just north of Killingsworth, is slated to open in mid-2017. Now under construction, its first phase includes a youth soccer field, playground, expanded community garden, walking paths and an Inter-Tribal Gathering Garden designed for cultural celebration and cultivation of native edible plants. The park is being built on the site of a former 25-acre construction landfill.

With the contribution, the Timbers and Thorns have donated more than $735,000 to develop 13 soccer fields and futsal courts in Portland since 2010.

“We are proud to be able to work with the Portland Parks Foundation and Verde on the community-led development of Thomas Cully Park,” said Mike Golub, president of business for the Timbers. “This contribution will support the diverse and vibrant Cully community through the creation of outlets for play, gardening and cultural gathering.”

The development of Thomas Cully Park is a unique partnership between the local nonprofit organization Verde and Portland Parks & Recreation. The first phase of park development is budgeted at $10.6 million. 

Verde has been raising funds from a variety of public and private sources for the past few years. At a Portland Parks Foundation celebration in September 2016, Portland parks commissioner Amanda Fritz announced a new $3 million commitment from the city to bring the completion of the first phase within sight. Portland Parks Foundation then announced its campaign with Verde to help complete the funding.

“With this award, the Timbers and Thorns FC make a powerful investment in a community-based, community-led park project -- community members have overseen the site’s environmental assessment, designed park features, and developed safe routes for walking and biking to the park,” said Verde's Executive Director, Alan Hipólito. “We’d like to express our deepest appreciation to the Portland Timbers and Thorns, and to invite new partners to join us and the Portland Parks Foundation by making these final, critical contributions to build Cully Park.”

Portland Parks Foundation board chair Gina Eiben noted, "We are grateful for the Portland Timbers' and Thorns' timely support. We are also very excited to partner with Verde on this project, which brings the healthy environment and cultural benefits of a public park to a diverse community that has long lacked public infrastructure. The park is part of a larger vision for a thriving neighborhood.”

The Portland Parks Foundation was established in 2001 as the chief private fundraising partner of Portland Parks & Recreation. It has raised more than $12 million for parks and programs, and this year it is celebrating its 15th Anniversary of building common ground.

For more information on the Portland Parks Foundation, visit http://www.portlandpf.org/

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