Area resident proposes pavilion in north Jefferson City

One area resident is hoping to see a pavilion constructed in north Jefferson City and says all the necessary materials will be donated.

At the city's Parks and Recreation Commission meeting Tuesday, Joe Wilson made a brief presentation requesting the commission move forward with a pavilion near the Missouri River at the Noren Access. Wilson said he’s witnessed many people celebrate everything from weddings to family reunions near the city’s river access and believes a pavilion would only help encourage more to enjoy the Missouri River.

“It’s a very active place,” Wilson said. “Some call it heaven on earth.”

Wilson said he’s reached out to companies and organizations, and Farmers Concrete has agreed to put in a concrete slab at no cost, while Missouri American Water has agreed to provide funding for the pavilion structure up to $10,000. Wilson said he also has a letter from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers endorsing the pavilion idea.

“It’s needed,” Wilson said. “It doesn’t cost you anything.”

Several commission members said though the idea is great, they need to see specific plans and hear more details before they can sign off on any project.

“The concept sounds good,” said Commission Michael Couty. “I’m always in favor of something that doesn’t cost me anything.”

Bill Lockwood, director of the Parks, Recreation and Forestry Department, said the pavilion would undoubtedly be used but there’s a lot that still needs to be discussed. He said staff is not necessarily in favor of the idea, but is open to discussion.

“On the surface, it sounds like a good idea,” Lockwood said. “There’s a lot of issues to deal with.”

Lockwood said a group under the Jefferson City Area Chamber of Commerce has been discussing a similar idea that would be discussed with the commission as well. Lockwood said members of the group may be encouraged to attend an upcoming Park Resources and Planning Committee meeting to further discuss it.

Wilson’s idea also was referred to the Park Resources and Planning Committee, which will meet June 24.

The committee also will discuss ideas from other community members to enhance the city’s tennis courts and construct or incorporate facilities for the sport of pickleball.

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