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See More Grantees Like This One

Beaver Dam, WI

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2019

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: The City of Beaver Dam wanted to showcase its downtown Mural Walking Tour. To do this, they added benches along the route, allowing visitors to rest and interact with each other. The walking tour showcases 17 historical murals depicting 19th century business operations and notable Beaver Dam residents, including World War II glider pilot Harold Rief and science fiction author Raymond Z. Gallon. The City installed one six-foot-long, accessible bench near each mural on the walk. Additionally, they distributed mural tour maps to businesses and offices downtown. Project organizers report the seating has contributed to more pedestrian activity in the area. They also say the new benches have inspired private donations to purchase seating for other parts of downtown.

Milwaukee, WI

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2022

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: This project turned vacant lots into healing spaces by mowing grass, removing debris and hosting yoga sessions, health workshops and more.

Milwaukee, WI

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2020

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: As part of the ongoing efforts to improve Gardner Park, the City of Milwaukee added a new community gathering space. Located in the Menomonee River Hills neighborhood, the intergenerational space features a gravel patio area, as well as wheelchair-accessible tables with built-in game boards, benches, an information kiosk and new landscaping. Previously, the City installed a new playground, walking path and fitness equipment at the park. Project organizers say in recent years the neighborhood has welcomed an influx of new families -- including those from the Hmong community -- underscoring the need for a public space for neighbors to meet and socialize.

Nearby AARP Community Challenge Grantees

Beaver Dam, WI

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2019

Project Category: Public space activation

Description: The City of Beaver Dam wanted to showcase its downtown Mural Walking Tour. To do this, they added benches along the route, allowing visitors to rest and interact with each other. The walking tour showcases 17 historical murals depicting 19th century business operations and notable Beaver Dam residents, including World War II glider pilot Harold Rief and science fiction author Raymond Z. Gallon. The City installed one six-foot-long, accessible bench near each mural on the walk. Additionally, they distributed mural tour maps to businesses and offices downtown. Project organizers report the seating has contributed to more pedestrian activity in the area. They also say the new benches have inspired private donations to purchase seating for other parts of downtown.

Madison, WI

AARP Community Challenge Grant Year: 2021

Project Category: Trails

Description: The spot where a popular pedestrian and bicycle path connects with Leopold Community School has needed repairs for years. The Cannonball Path's entrance was cracked and overgrown with weeds. To make the gateway to the path more welcoming, volunteers laid new concrete, planted native perennials alongside the path, added interpretive signage and installed solar lighting. New benches give people a space to sit and to appreciate the sculpture that adorns the trail entrance. The artwork depicts a fiddlehead fronds -- an homage to the local ecology. Today, the space gives educators the opportunity to teach students about local wildlife and also acts as a drop-off location for parents escorting their children to school. Project organizers say the improvements are part of community-wide efforts to give people more resting spaces along local trails.

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AARP Wisconsin State Office

222 W Washington Avenue
Suite 600
Madison, WI 53703
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Phone: 866-448-3611
Fax: 608-251-7612
Email: [email protected]