FoCo Parks Forever: Preserving our parks for the next generation

Twin Silo Park

Twin Silo Park; photo credit: City of Fort Collins

The City of Fort Collins’ parks are a source of pride for city residents. Boasting over 966 acres of developed parks and over 45 miles of paved trails, the City of Fort Collins park system is extensive.

Unfortunately, the City’s parks and park system amenities are aging more rapidly than they can be maintained. Over the years, this funding gap could lead to parks and trails falling into disrepair, raising accessibility and safety concerns and diminishing their value to the community. It is not uncommon for municipalities to sell their parks to eliminate expenses and raise revenue in an effort to bridge funding gaps for over-extended city budgets.

FoCo Parks ForeverCreative problems require creative solutions, which is how the FoCo Parks Forever Fund was born. “To help ensure that our community parks, trails and open spaces are maintained and kept updated long into the future, we are working with the Northern Colorado Community Foundation and Fort Collins City Give to establish a fund dedicated to that purpose,” says Jane Jackson.

Fundholders at the Community Foundation, Bill and Jane Jackson, have committed a dollar-for-dollar match up to $30,000 to create the FoCo Parks Forever Fund. This fund will exist in perpetuity to help ensure the city’s parks continue to be the joyful, enriching spaces they were intended to be.

The FoCo Parks Forever fund allows philanthropic community members a way to collectively invest in the vitality of Fort Collins parks. Funds will support sustainable operations in parks, long-term upkeep of the trail system, and address costs associated with repair or replacement of park installations and play equipment at the end of their lifecycles.

When asked why they chose to make such a generous gift to benefit the City of Fort Collins parks system, the Jacksons stated, “Three generations of our family have valued the times spent on the trails, ballfields, playgrounds, dog parks, and open spaces provided by the City of Fort Collins. Outdoor play is important for kids, and outdoor recreation is important for all ages, so these spaces and facilities contribute greatly to the overall quality of life in our area.”

Celebrating our people, partners, and impact: Community Foundation Week

What a week! From November 12-18, the Community Foundation of Northern Colorado joined more than 1,000 other community foundations across the country in celebrating Community Foundation Week. Read President Kristin Todd’s opinion editorial about the role of community foundations.

In the spirit of bringing philanthropy and impact together, the Foundation hosted two distinct appreciation events– a nonprofit celebration and the Gathering of Gratitude.

Nonprofit Celebration

Our regional nonprofits work hard to make Northern Colorado a stronger, healthier, and more vibrant community. To say “thank you,” we partnered with The Lyric Cinema on Monday, November 14 to host an appreciation event, sponsored by FirstBank. The event was in lieu of our typical Colorado Gives Day Rally in order to celebrate and honor all our nonprofit partners, not just those participating in Colorado Gives Day.

Nonprofit attendees enjoyed social time with other nonprofits, along with a complimentary nacho bar, before heading into The Lyric’s main theatre to view the premier of a series of short nonprofit films. The Lyric paired a handful of Northern Colorado nonprofits with local filmmakers to produce the films, giving the nonprofits a powerful way to tell their stories.

During the event, two nonprofits, 3Hopeful Hearts and FoCo Cafe, were selected at random to receive a $1,000 grant from the Foundation. We look forward to awarding a final $1,000 on this year’s Colorado Gives Day.

CO Gives 2022Gifts for Colorado Gives Day can be made from now through December 6 at

Above are just some select images from our Nonprofit Celebration and our Gathering of Gratitude. To view a full gallery of photos from either event, select the appropriate link below. 

View photos from the Nonprofit Celebration.

View photos from the Gathering of Gratitude.

Thank you for making our community a better place

Gathering of Gratitude

On Thursday, November 17, the Foundation hosted a special event at its offices for donors, fund holders, Community Champions, and volunteers to show our sincere appreciation for their generosity and commitment to community. Guests braved the snow to enjoy camaraderie, hors d’oeuvres, and delicious drinks, courtesy of Odell Brewing.

During the event, the Foundation recognized an amazing Loveland couple, Mary and Jeff Hiatt, and GroupGives, for their outstanding grantmaking and positive community impact.

Mary and Jeff Hiatt have elevated and supported numerous Loveland agencies, using their fund at the Community Foundation to support programs, such as the Windows on the World Travel Grant through the Thompson Education Foundation. With support from their son Paul and daughter-in-law Michelle, the Hiatts founded the Hiatt Farms Montessori School which opened in 2018. Additionally, with a grant from their donor advised fund, the Hiatts filled a gap in funding to Warehouse Business Accelerator’s Innovation Hub, leveraging an additional $250,000 grant from the state.

In 2005, The Group–the leading realtor in Northern Colorado–approached the Community Foundation about creating a collective charitable giving program. The result was GroupGives– a corporate donor advised fund supported entirely by The Group realtors and staff. This year, GroupGives celebrated making over $1 million in cumulative grants to the community. In 2018, The Group established a second, endowed fund, creating a legacy of charitable giving that will make positive impacts in our community for generations to come.

Giving season dates and deadlines

It’s the most wonderful time of the year… giving season! If you’re planning to make end of year grants from your fund or donate into your fund, below are some dates of which to be aware. Most importantly, please contribute to your fund and submit your end-of-year grant recommendations by Tuesday, December 6.

Grant requests received after December 6 will take longer than the standard 7-10 business day processing time due to increased grantmaking activity and holiday closures.

Community Champions tackle big issues

Through the support of Community Champions, the Foundation continued its unwavering commitment to collaboration throughout 2022. View a list below of last year’s accomplishments and next year’s intentions, thanks to our generous Community Champions.

Want to be part of transformational community change?
Become a Community Champion today.

Reminder: New Fee Schedule Coming January 2023

Donors and nonprofit partners trust the Community Foundation of Northern Colorado to invest and manage charitable assets responsibly. Transparency, accessibility, and impact are at the heart of our financial practices. Our tiered fee schedule will be updated, beginning January 1, 2023. View the new fee schedule

Upcoming Events

Colorado Gives Day – December 6, 2022

Celebration of Philanthropy – May 4, 2023

Breaking Good News NoCo

Showcase your success in our newsletter, on our website, and on social media

Good news is contagious, and we want to celebrate YOU! We invite 501(c)(3) organizations that serve Northern and Eastern Colorado residents to share a success story through Breaking Good News.

Community Champions

Through the support of Community Champions, the Community Foundation brings people and resources together to spark change, channel passion into action, and explore solutions. Learn more about Community Champions.