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Freedom Park Recommended as District Park's New Name - 60-day Public Notice Period Begins

Date: March 3, 2003
Contact: Amy H. Arditi, Division of Parks and Recreation Marketing and Publications Coordinator

Phone: (757) 259-3217

The James City County Parks and Recreation Advisory Commission chose Freedom Park as the qualifying name for what is now known as District Park at their February 19 meeting. In accordance with the proposed Park Naming Policy, names were solicited through public advertisements and a total of 26 different names were submitted ranging from the park’s location near Centerville Road to numerous historical references.


Citizens were asked to submit names that met criteria outlined in the Park Naming Policy such as provide some form of individual identity related to the geographic area of the facility; an outstanding feature of the facility; the adjoining subdivision; commonly recognized historical individuals, events, or groups; or an individual or group who contributed significantly to the acquisition or development of the individual facility. A 60-day public notice period will begin in which citizen comments must be received in writing within the 60 days. Public comment can be addressed to Alan Robertson, Parks and Recreation Advisory Commission Chairman, 5249-C Olde Towne Road, Williamsburg, VA 23188 or to After the public notice period is over the qualifying name will be submitted to the Board of Supervisors consideration.


"After careful consideration of all the names submitted Freedom Park really stood out above the rest," said Ned Cheely, Director of Parks and Recreation, "The name resounds with the history of that land and demonstrates the quest for liberty and freedom."


The land the park sits on is rich with history and has played a significant role in shaping our Country. During preliminary design, notable historical features were discovered including the site of the June 26, 1781, Revolutionary War Battle of Spencer’s Ordinary; early records of the first Free Black Settlement in America; and the discovery of a previously unknown homestead built between 1680 – 1730. The Division is currently considering options on how to interpret these sites.

Phase I of District Park opened in 2002 and includes mountain bike trails, an open meadow, a one-mile entrance road, a 36-car parking lot, and landscaping. Future park plans include picnic facilities, hiking and biking trails, and other passive recreation.


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