Harmony Park opens in Billings Heights


BILLINGS – A grand opening for a new Billings Park with picnic shelters, a basketball court and a selection of unique musical instruments, dubbed Harmony Park, was hosted by members of the Better Billings Foundation on Saturday.

The three-acre Harmony Park sits on a city park under a long-term lease to the Better Billings Foundation, the same non-profit group that operates the Oasis Water Park in the Heights at 543 Aronson Ave.

“We said, well, we would really like to do something to benefit not only Oasis but also our neighborhood and our community as a whole and that’s the vision that came out of that,” said Chuck Barthuly, executive director of the Better Billings Foundation. and director of operations for Oasis.

MTN News / Mitch Lagge

Harmony Park, located next to Oasis at 543 Aronson Ave. in Billings.

In the park, people can walk on a path that features different percussion instruments, designed for families. The path leads to the picnic shelters and a few more steps to the west will bring you to the basketball court.

Better Billings Foundation staff opened Oasis in 2012 after the city donated the land to the foundation.

Barthuly said the group wanted to develop the land surrounding the water park over the past 10 years. The project fire started in earnest in 2019 with a first donation from the law firm Heenan and Cook to build the basketball court, Barthuly said.

“The partnership we have with the city and the donors who made this possible is the reason it happened. The Better Billings Foundation is so very happy to be a part of our community and to work to make Billings a better place to live and thrive for our families, ”said Barthuly.

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MTN News / Mitch Lagge

Two picnic shelters inside Harmony Park in Billings.

The park project cost about $ 150,000, half of which was funded through donations and volunteer work, Barthuly said.

Harmony Park was a big hit with kids when it opened, as the instruments were used a lot. But the basketball court was perhaps more popular with kids who wanted to shoot hoops before the court was even finished.

“We hadn’t even set up the hoops yet and the kids were asking if they could come and play. 15 seconds after we were done putting up the hoops and putting on the nets, there were kids playing basketball, ”Barthuly said.

A section of the park west of Harmony Park will have sod laid by the fall, so there will be a large section of grass for playing and other games, Barthuly said.

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MTN News / Mitch Lagge

The basketball court developed by the Better Billings Foundation at Sahara Park in Billings.

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