City of Tenino announces the acquisition of 60 acres of new parkland.

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Drone footage over new acreage

City of Tenino announces the acquisition of 60 acres of new parkland.

The Tenino City Park is a hub of activity and recreation for our community, the current 68 acres considered the city park consists of a new playground, paved trails, the Thurston County bike trail, camping, a historic museum, sports fields, the Quarry House Community Center and the Tenino Quarry Pool.  Tenino’s Park system will soon include a new park with an additional 60 acres of woodlands bringing the total acreage of Tenino City Parks to nearly 130 acres of outdoor space available to the public. The imminent purchase of this property from Norseman Timber Company is made possible by a generous donation from the Angela J. Bowen Conservancy Foundation for the purposes of preservation and outdoor recreation.

The City Park currently has 13 acres of woodland that feature hiking trails that have been used by City residents for decades. In 2011, when Weyerhaeuser announced they would be logging the parcels behind the park, residents discovered that the City of Tenino didn’t own the ridgeline trail above the Quarry Pool.  A grassroots “Save our Park” campaign ensued.  Funds were raised and the City acquired a 13-acre buffer strip of forest between the park and the logging. We are very excited to now bring that additional 60 acres into public use as there is no doubt Tenino Residents love their park and this space will be enjoyed by the community for generations. 

The Norseman Timber Company purchased the 60 acres of replanted timberland from Weyerhaeuser in 2012.  Norseman manager, Georges Yates, has made many trips to Tenino over the years and fell in love with the city park and Tenino.  Without Mr. Yates support, this project never would have taken off.  The city has wanted to acquire the land since 2012 but it wasn’t until the creation of our new P.A.R.C. (Parks, Arts, Recreation, Culture) Specialist position in 2022 that we were able to make progress on this goal. We are very grateful for the work Jessica Reeves-Rush, P.A.R.C. Specialist, has done for the city and the success of this acquisition is very much the result of her hard work and dedication.

The vision for the park will include trails extending from the current park trailheads.  The new trails will include the allowance of hiking, horseback riding and non-motorized bikes. The new park will receive its own name which will be announced later. 

Resolution 2024-1 is on the agenda for the next Tenino City Council meeting, which will give the mayor permission to sign the purchase and sale agreement with Norseman and accept the grant from the Angela J. Bowen Conservation Foundation.  The grant, at $440,000 is enough to cover the purchase price plus closing costs. 

Whether folks are excited about the preservation of vital habitat, or by the prospect of more green spaces to, there has been plenty of enthusiasm and community support around this project. None of this would have been possible without the support of the Tenino City Council, the P.A.R.C. Foundation of Thurston County for facilitating the entire project, the Norseman Timber Company, and last but certainly not least, the generous financial support of the Angela J. Bowen Conservancy Foundation. 

We are very proud of the progress we have made throughout Tenino in the past decade, and we believe that with our low crime rates, historic downtown, excellent schools, vibrant arts community and now possibly the highest per capita of residents to parks in the state we live in one of the greatest communities you can find, it’s also a great place to visit and shop.

Thank you, 
Dave Watterson, City of Tenino Mayor