‘We are eternally grateful to her,’ former longtime director of Peoria Park District dies at 80

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PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) – The Peoria Park District is mourning the lost of a longtime leader.

Thursday, Bonnie Noble died at the age of 80.

Noble was the executive director of the Peoria Park District for 24 years until her retirement in 2016.

She is credited with projects including the RiverPlex, the Peoria PlayHouse Children’s Museum, and the expansion of the Peoria Zoo.

The Park District also earned three National Gold Medal awards for park and recreation management under her leadership.

Current executive director Emily Cahill said when she thinks of the park district, she thinks of Noble.

“She was a visionary. She knew where she wanted us to be, and certainly, she was very successful in those endeavors, and we are eternally grateful to her for what the park district looks like today,” said Cahill.

The Park District is planning to place lights on a weeping willow tree at Lakeview park to honor Noble’s life and legacy.

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