Marco Island’s new jewel: Veterans’ Community Park is almost ready for the public

Will Watts

After nearly a year of construction, Marco’s Veterans’ Community Park is coming back in a big way.

First, the city of Marco Island will be hosting a joint event with Christmas Island Style. The 2022 Annual Tree Lighting and Community Celebration will mark the reopening of the park. 

The event is from 5 until 9 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 3. At 5 p.m., there will be a ribbon cutting, followed by the lighting at 6 and a concert at 7 featuring Joel Fry. Food will be available for purchase. Beer, wine and frozen drinks will be for sale by the Sunrise Rotary.

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The next big date, and likely very exciting for many foodies, the return of the popular Farmer’s Market to Veterans Community Park. It resumes Dec. 7 (from 7:30 a.m. until 1 p.m., every Wednesday through April).

With a projected cost of around $11 million, improvements include a bandshell with concert lawn for outdoor performances, a picnic and game area with giant chess board, bocce ball court, hammocks and outdoor ping pong tables, and a playground area with five pieces of playground equipment on 4,366 square feet of rubber playground surface, according to information provided by contractor Manhattan Construction Co. 

There are walkways, four overhead trellises – two with swings – new trees planted, and 40 different plant species.

There’s also a new permanent 1,329 sq. ft. restroom building, augmented by two restrooms within the bandshell.

Veterans Community Park is located at Park 901 Park Ave., Marco Island.