PEORIA, Ill. — Peoria Park District leaders have applied for two grants in hopes of purchasing the Forest Park Nature Center.
If awarded the grants, they’d be used to fund the purchase of the center from the Forest Park Foundation.
The park district currently manages the area, but most of the land is owned by the foundation.
If the district is able to purchase the property, the operations at the center won’t change.
“The thing that matters for people to understand is that they will always have the great experience that they have had at Forest Park Nature Center, and this grant opportunity really allows us to guarantee that that’s the case moving in to the future,” said parks district director Emily Cahill.
She also says they expect to make improvements and updates to the center.
“We believe that Forest Park Nature Center is one of the absolute gems that we have here in Peoria and we draw people from all over the region to come and spend the day with us in the nature center. It is our belief that it is best that that property remain publicly held, so that we can ensure that it is open to the public for years to come,” said Cahill.
The parks district will find out if it’s been awarded either of the grants in the next six months.
Cahill says if the parks district doesn’t receive a grant, they’ll move to plan B which includes fundraising.