State Awards $900,000 to Next Stage with 90 days to raise $100,000

Today, the Enhance Iowa Board awarded a $900,000 Community Attraction and Tourism grant to a North Liberty’s Next Stage project.

The award is contingent on raising $100,000 in the next 90 days.

Gifts can be made through the Community Foundation of Johnson County online or by mailing a check with “Centennial Park” in the memo line to CFJC; 501 12th Ave, Ste 102; Coralville, IA 52241. Gifts of $500 or more will be permanently recognized at the park, and legacy opportunities are also available.

The park development is a win for the region, with an estimated $11.6 million of economic activity expected each year to generated by the park, with these positive impacts rippling through businesses across the region. The development also spurs the potential for additional growth on the ample land surrounding the park and will help employers maintain and attract a strong workforce. Residents throughout the region will benefit from the enhanced quality of life, entertainment and accessibility the new amenities will bring.

The development includes the Centennial Center and connected amphitheater, which will be at the heart of the park and connect residents to one another and the arts. The multifaceted facility will welcome public events like craft fairs and author visits as well as private events such as business functions and weddings. Nonprofit organizations will benefit from a new event space with discounted or waived event fees to host community meals, annual fundraisers and volunteer appreciation events.

Outside at the amphitheater, a wide range of ticketed and free programs will be showcased seasonally on the stage including performances by touring artists, comedians, symphony orchestras, local dance studios and school district choir and band ensembles. The new performance venue will offer easy access to the arts for rural communities along Interstate 380.

Restrooms, an expansive plaza and necessary utilities are also included in phase one. Phase two, which includes a premier splash pad, wheelchair-accessible playground units and additional restrooms is expected by 2026. Phases three and four, which bring an open-air pavilion and honor garden to the park, will be completed as soon as funding allows.

The  grant joins other substantial gifts from local organizations and individuals, which totals over $2.1 million to date, including yet-to-be announced gifts that helped leverage the state commitment. The total project cost is estimated at $16.4 million, with the first phase being the largest at $8.8 million. The City has committed $6.5 million towards the improvements.

Although the four phases will stretch several years, the Next Stage capital campaign is now. Visit to learn more about the project and make a donation, eligible for tax deduction, to the Centennial Park Next Stage Fund at the Community Foundation of Johnson County. Total gifts of $500 or more will be recognized permanently at the park reflective of impact. Naming opportunities for areas throughout the park are also available. Questions can be directed to [email protected].

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