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Frontier Park is versatility personified

3:38 pm August 26th, 2013

When the Pierce County Fair completed its annual four-day run at Frontier Park earlier this month, it marked the end of a busy stretch of high-profile activities that demonstrated the park’s versatility as a hub for the community.
The park, part of the Pierce County Parks and Recreatino System, is home to a wide array of events and activities. Here’s what went on there recently:
• The 44th annual Tacoma Highland Games were held June 22, featuring all things Scottish – men in kilts, bagpipers and cultural sporting events, to name a few.
• Graham Jam took over July 13. Emmanuel Baptist Church hosted its seventh annual community gathering that included food, games, live music and strength demonstrations by The Power Team.
• The county fair, which has made the park its permanent home since 1968 after bouncing around among several temporary locations, hosted its usual 4H animal exhibits, carnival rides and games, vendors and community organizations’ booths, and live entertainment that included a hypnotist and the Wenatchee Youth Circus Aug. 8-11.
The park, which sits beside State Route 161/Meridian in Graham, also regularly hosts equestrian shows, Scout activities, car shows, quarter-midget car racing, and Parks and Recreation-sponsored classes and events such as dog obedience training, dancing and the Gross Out Olympics, a chldren’s event in July that involved slimy, sticky fun.
All of that’s in addition to casual recreation, such as families that bring their children to the playground.
The park also rents its buildings for weddings, receptions and company or organization parties. Frontier Lodge seats gatherings of 200 people in its main room and 100 people in a secondary, smaller room.
The lodge, which once was the home economics building for the fair, was remodeled to the tune of $1.3 million and reopened in July 2007.
The playground gained notoriety when the community, including students at Kapowsin Elementary School, helped raise money for $270,000 in new, handicap-accessible equipment.
The 60-acre park, with paved pathways that meander among tall fir trees and park buildings, is generally open from 7:30 a.m. to dusk.

Jeff Donovan, a Pierce County Parks and Recreation worker, updated the readerboard at Frontier Park in July with an announcement of a coming event. (Jim Bryant/The Dispatch)

Jeff Donovan, a Pierce County Parks and Recreation worker, updated the readerboard at Frontier Park in July with an announcement of a coming event. (Jim Bryant/The Dispatch)

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