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from the com­mu­nity. This is the first project that we’re try­ing that with.”

When it comes to feed­back, Lewis said the depart­ment did not re­ceive any com­plaints from res­i­dents about the park, but rather a large amount of ku­dos.

“When we put the in­for­ma­tion on Face­book, what we were happy to see is folks re­spond­ing with a tremen­dous amount of things that they would like us to add as well which is what we’re look­ing for when we’re de­vel­op­ing fu­ture plans for the park,” Lewis said. “Peo­ple had sug­ges­tions about adding dif­fer­ent things to the park like art, things for teens or an am­phithe­ater. Just any ideas that they could pos­si­bly come up with.”

As far as a time­line for the mas­ter plan, Lewis said the con­ver­sa­tion is timely. Con­sul­tants will be­gin work­ing with park plan­ning and de­vel­op­ment of­fi­cials to com­pile all ideas and see which ones are fea­si­ble and can be blended to­gether. That in­for­ma­tion will then be pre­sented to M-NCPPC lead­er­ship and shared with the com­mu­nity again for ad­di­tional feed­back, she said.

“A com­plete time­line is not avail­able at this point but that would be the next steps,” she said. “What will fit, what will work and of course what’s fis­cally, mean­ing fi­nan­cially, pos­si­ble to do. They’ll put to­gether a mas­ter plan with all of that in mind and then that will come back to the com­mu­nity.”

Be­cause Watkins is one of three re­gional parks in the county, Lewis said no pref­er­ence will be given to the re­sponses and data from res­i­dents in one area — such as Up­per Marl­boro where Watkins Re­gional Park is lo­cated — over those who live in other ar­eas.

“Peo­ple come from all over. We’ve had peo­ple come from as far as Penn­syl­va­nia and the East­ern Shore to Watkins Park,” Lewis said. “We just got the new, won­der­ful Wiz­ard of Oz play­ground which opened there last year. It’s a great fan­fare and that’s one of the big­gest at­trac­tions we have at the park right now. They also just put in a new ac­cess road that comes from [Route] 202 into the heart of the park which eases the traf­fic from the other en­trance on [Route] 193.”

Some of the other at­trac­tions at Watkins Park in­clude a sec­ond imag­i­na­tion play­ground, the Old Mary­land Farm, a carousel, train rides, ball fields and even a ten­nis bub­ble, ac­cord­ing to Lewis.

“Watkins is one of our busier parks and it’s full of plenty of at­trac­tions,” Lewis said. “This is not so much a ren­o­va­tion of the park in as much as adding to all that that park could of­fer to the com­mu­nity.”

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