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Make Goebel Great Celebrates First Year Successes

This year has been a big one for Make Goebel Great, a grassroots organization whose mission is to "create a safe, healthy, and creative environment to play, socialize, and grow."

Yesterday, co-founder Emily Wolff shared a letter on the organization's website,, highlighing the group's successes in its first year and outlining plans for Goebel Park's future. Below, The River City News has shared the letter in its entirety:

Wow, this year has flown by! It seems like yesterday we were hosting a Pizza Planning Party for the Park and now we are decorating for the holidays! I would like to give a recap since our last newsletter. As I sit sipping coffee at Left Bank, looking out the window to this grey cold rainy day…I think I should start with the Make Goebel Great Concert this summer.

The Concert was a huge success! The Rocket Flys and the Turkeys donated their talent to create a fun, energetic, musical experience for everyone in attendance. And speaking of attendance, we had over 500 people attend! The energy at Goebel Park that day was amazing. Friends, families, and neighbors came together to celebrate our park and the potential it holds for the future of our community. We were able to introduce the idea of goats at Goebel Park, a demo Pump Track designed by Riding Forward, and the start of a wonderful mural by local artist, Bret Schulte. We were able to raise over $6,600 at this event and it truly kick-started the forward momentum we have been experiencing ever since.

Fundraising has been the main focus of this project this fall. We have been looking into several grant opportunities and working to solidify funds to move forward with the purchase of new playground equipment. We still need to raise close to $100k to complete the project, but I have no doubt that we will get there. You can donate directly on our website or at the Bank of Kentucky. If your company is interested in end of the year giving, we are a 501-c3 and would be happy to help you in this process.

Every little bit makes a huge difference. We had volunteers at all three of the festivals that MainStrasse Village Association hosted and we were able to make over $6,700 through those festivals. It was fun for everyone involved and everyone loved drinking for a cause and tipping for a new playground! We also had funding success at Cincy Sundaes. Rowan and Adam Weckman gave a presentation about taking the park from “blah” to “ta-da”…and requested funds to purchase more paint for the park. They were awarded $1,180 towards the purchase of paint. Make Goebel Great was also chosen for the “Grateful Giving” program started at the Good People’s Festival this year. We received an additional $600 to purchase more paint!

On the 25th of October, Make Goebel Great participated in a Cov200 Impact Project. What a magical fall day! Community from near and far came together to help finish the painting of all the park shelters. Talk about a Cinderella story…the park went from brown to beautiful. Beautiful…Goebel Park truly looks beautiful. We were able, not only to paint the shelters, but also landscape the gazebo, weed the entire park, install Bret’s mural, and plant 5 street trees in the neighborhood. We truly made Goebel great on this Impact Day.

Covingtonians can now feel proud as soon as they pull off the 5th Street exit. Their Goebel Park looks better then ever. Now, I have to admit my one oversight on this huge project…a sign. Goebel Park does not have a sign! With all these betterments we are making, we need a sign…a happy sign that stakes claim to our neighborhood green space. I would like to incorporate signage into our new landscaping and playground coming in 2015. If any one has a sign or landscaping connection…point them in our direction.

Speaking of 2015, we are currently working with the city and our playground designer to finish our playground design. Fingers crossed, we will be planning our community install in the spring. We are also working on plans to pilot a program using goats as a way to maintain landscaping on the hillside in the park. Loren Wolff and Gus Wolf are working on the legalities, and the components of this project. We can’t wait for our Goebel kids!

We are also working with the Sierra Club to create a Monarch Recovery Garden. The space was cleared during our Impact Day and now we are in the process of planning our plants needed and overall landscape design. Goebel Park is going to have several educational areas of interest. The children in our community will be able to play, observe goats working, and help rebuild our Monarch population. We are working on creating a truly wonderful gathering place for all Covingtonians!

Some other changes you may have noticed are the new large trash and recycling toters. The larger toters allow for better trash maintenance and less trash polluting our park. The impact of these receptacles has already made a tremendous difference! The city has also poured two concrete bollards at the entrance of the park. These are to prohibit vehicular traffic into the park and set the tone that all park space is safe play space. We are looking to remove the large blacktop area with the installation of our new playground! The more green space the better!

The latest Make Goebel Great news is very exciting! Four of our volunteers were awarded major awards. Cole and Victor Imperi received the Community Leadership Award from the Center of Great Neighborhoods for their work with Goebel Park and their creation of the Make Goebel Great logo.Rowan and Adam Weckman received the Key to the Future Award for their involvement with the park project. Their youthful energy and vision have inspired so many. Make Goebel Great was also awarded a CovTen Grant to hang four more orange chandeliers in the picnic shelters. There will be light, creative design, and a festive space that continues to represent our awesome community…thanks CovTen!

And thank you! Make Goebel Great has had an amazing first ten months. We are still in our infancy yet have accomplished so much. I am most proud of the way this project has grown our sense of community. We have come together and bridged relationships with so many. Our little grassroots project has put down roots and they have taken hold. I look forward to growing our project in 2015! Hopefully we get another great snow day to celebrate together at Goebel, but until then Happy Holidays and Happy New Year…

Emily Palmer Wolff

Make Goebel Great


- Staff report/Photo provided by Make Goebel Great