Cleveland Park

Located at the northwest corner of East Genesee and North Manlius St., Cleveland Park is a greenspace adjacent to the Village of Fayetteville Municipal Building and Fayetteville Fire Department (FFD).

Dedicated in June 1937, this property once belonged to the Fayetteville School District (the Fayetteville High School once stood where the fire department is now!) and was used for recreational purposes and was known as the Fayetteville Community Play Area. See Park History below.

Now, villagers and visitors will recognize the space as a location for Fayetteville Fire Department events, and home to the annual Memorial Tree and the community menorah during the holiday season.

Park Amenities
This park is part of the Village of Fayetteville Municipal Building and Fayetteville Fire Department property and is used for village-sponsored community events including fire department open houses, the annual lighting of the menorah, and annual tree lighting.

Park History
The former Fayetteville Community Play Area was born and operated by a joint committee of residents appointed by the school board and the village board and was a mostly volunteer effort in the midst of difficult economic times. The community playground was developed to keep children from playing in the street. Some of the reasons offered were “houses are too small for any soft of fun,” most yards are either too rutty or too well-kept for play and small children like the company of similar age playmates.

The property was still technically school district property and the old high school’s barn at the rear of the property (border with Elm St.) housed recreational and playground equipment including: 2 picnic tables, 4 benches, 3 baby swings, 4 adult swings; also had 4 bean bags, 2 deck tennis rings, 2 tennis nets, 1 softball catcher’s mitt; 1 volley ball; 4 horse shoes; 2 hard balls; 4 badminton balls 1 chest protector; ping pong set; 1 playground ball.

Women of the Village offered to clean up the former school ground in the center of the village and arrange for playground when the Village men pointed out that the land was owned by school and the insurance posed an issue. In response, the women went to the school board. The village contributed $100; other gifts totaled $400 which bought the play equipment and swings.

The space operated at least one year and probably two through all volunteer labor. The playground operated by having one adult volunteer at the playground from 9 a.m. to noon and again 1 to 5 p.m.

Children maintained the playground and formed clubs with officers. The boys were the construction force keeping the grass cut, weeds pulled, putting up and taking down swings each day, marking tennis courts, while girls did the cleaning and kept things straight. One woman came on several days to tell stories to young children. The summer culminated with a Field Day.

After an accident occurred, the women found that their insurance did not cover them as they had been told, so resigned because their husbands’ lawyers said they should not incur the responsibility.