Des Moines Legacy Foundation Projects
Des Moines Legacy Foundation Awards Funds to Key to Change Music Program
The board of directors of the Des Moines Legacy Foundation voted at their March meeting to approve a proposal from the Key to Change organization to provide free to low cost music lessons in Des Moines for fiscal year 2019. Headed by Dr. Quinton Morris, the program will use the $3,000 award to provide violin and viola lessons to low income students who live in Des Moines and attend either middle school or high school. Key to Change is focused on supporting students in South King County with the gift of music.
Dr. Quinton Morris enjoys a multifaceted career as a concert violinist, chamber musician, educator and entrepreneur. He performs solo concerts/recitals and chamber music and presents lectures all over the world: the United States, Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia and the Middle East. Notable solo concerto performances are the Seattle, Thalia, Renton, Tacoma Youth and South Suburban Symphonies, Orchestra Seattle and the Everett Philharmonic.
Dr. Morris has received numerous honors and awards including the Puget Sound Business Journal's "40 Under 40 Award" for esteemed leaders and entrepreneurs in Seattle, the Seattle University Alumni Association's Outstanding Academic and Arts Faculty Award, and the Seattle Mayor's Arts Award. He has also won awards at the Boston Conservatory Chamber Music Honors Competition and the Louisiana Junior Philharmonic Orchestra Young Artists' Concerto Competition.
Dr. Morris serves as the Director of Chamber and Instrumental Music and Associate Professor of Violin and Chamber Music at Seattle University. Since coming to the university 2007, Dr. Morris has successfully transformed a nascent Music Division into a community of artists that serves as a center for talented music faculty and students to grow, learn and foster their music education and talent. He wrote and designed the Bachelor of Music degree and curriculum, recruited music faculty and students and brought in professional musicians to provide guest artist performances and educational residencies. He is the first music professor in over 25 years (and the second living African-American violinist in United States history) to receive tenure and promotion. He also serves on the summer faculties for the Evergreen and Summit Music Festivals and a board member of Artist Trust.
Dr. Morris began his studies at Xavier University of Louisiana. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from The North Carolina School of the Arts and a Master of Music degree from The Boston Conservatory. He earned the Doctor of Musical Arts degree at The University of Texas at Austin.
Other local non profits supporting this non profit include the Rotary Club of Renton, Allied Arts Foundation and 4Culture.
For more information on the Key to Change project for Des Moines please contact Dr. Quinton Morris, Qmorris@keytochangestudio.org
Midway Park Community Garden (MPCG)
Midway Park Community Garden (MPCG) is new as of 2018 to Des Moines. It was developed with the hope it would be a space that brought more people
out to Midway Park and allowed for increased opportunities for neighbors to get to know each other, and it has definitely found success in just
that! Not only is MPCG a place for adults to come and putter around in, but the children of the neighborhood love being able to explore planting,
watering, and trying things fresh from the beds. Located in the Pacific Ridge neighborhood, the existing beds are based on a sharing garden
model – the motto is "take a little, leave a little." We plant based on input that is gathered from residents of the area and then what grows
is free for anyone that is visiting Midway Park to take home.
We're excited to be expanding Spring 2019 with the addition of a children's bed and additional beds that will be for families/individuals from
the neighborhood to use for the season along with a small stipend to get it growing. The garden is very thankful and proud to have the support
of the Des Moines Legacy Foundation for the second year. We hope to keep this garden growing and add more opportunities for gardening around
town in the future. Please stay tuned for updates and more by following the garden's
Des Moines Legacy Foundation Annual LEGACY Award
2018 Des Moines Legacy Award goes to volunteer youth sports coach David Rahn - the 2018 Legacy Award winner.
Named by the board of directors, David was presented with a trophy in the form of a glass flame, signifying the positive force of an outstanding
community volunteer in serving the needs of our community through selfless leadership. The presentation took place July 11 during the opening of
the 2018 Summer Concert Series at Beach Park.
David has been a volunteer coach in the Des Moines Parks, Recreation and Senior Services youth sports programs for the past decade. Helping to
shape local youth not only into better-skilled players, but better teammates and human beings. During his tenure David has coached hundreds of
children in multiple sports, truly making a difference in the lives of children in the Des Moines area. David instills in his youth how to be a
model citizen, a contributing member of the community and a good teammate.
He is just one of the many fantastic people who inspire and mold both the character and future of our children through parks and recreation. These
mentors and leaders come from all walks of life, never failing to provide enthusiasm, and guidance. Coaches are some of the most selfless, giving
and incredible people who have an enduring influence on the lives of all with whom they come in contact. Being a coach, for any sport, at any level,
is a daunting challenge and requires absolute commitment and dedication. David has taken on this challenge time and time again. Never once has he
denied a player access to a team he has coached; in fact, David has been accepting of any player regardless of age, gender, race or athletic ability
as long as they were able to be on a city team. David serves as an example of selflessness and passion; an example carried on by all those he has
taught on and off the sports surface. For his tenacious commitment, the employees of Des Moines Parks, Recreation and Senior Services are thankful.
Nomination forms for the 2019 Legacy Award will be available in January.
Des Moines Legacy Foundation LEGACY Award 2017
Congratulations to Laura Hartema. She has been chosen by the Des Moines Legacy Foundation board of directors to receive the foundation's inaugural LEGACY Award. The award is in the form of a glass flame, signifying the positive force of an outstanding community volunteer in changing the needs of our community through selfless leadership through parks, recreation and senior services.
Laura has been the director of Friends of Des Moines Creek for nearly two decades. Her focus has been on protecting the stream buffer, removing invasives and replanting with native plants to reduce erosion,
protect trees from English ivy, and improve fish and wildlife habitat.
Laura, a vivacious woman, was surprised by the award. "Being a local ecologist, I enjoy the many volunteers who pitch in to improve our community and Des Moines Creek. All types have volunteered, from high schools, colleges, churches, and other community groups. It is a tough task to control invasive, non-invasive vegetation along the creek and maintain a healthy buffer. Native plants help prevent erosion, improve water quality, and provide shade and cover for salmon."
Laura maintains a volunteer website and has contributed various Ask an Ecologist articles for the Des Moines City Currents magazine for the past two years. I asked Laura what she wanted to convey to the community about preserving the environment; "I write articles to bridge the environment with our community," she answered. "I want to show people how their actions matter. Each of us can do a small part to care for and maintain a healthy environment. We live in a small community, but collectively, we make up a greater planet."
I was delighted to learn she has written a book. "I spent three months as the sole woman scientist working alongside twenty-five men on a commercial fishing
vessel in Alaska," Laura said. "My memoir is titled, "Bering Sea Strong: Sometimes A Woman Has to Board a Fishing Boat to Find Herself." When the book comes
out in March 2018, I will look for it on Amazon. To follow Laura and her progress, go to
We feel lucky and appreciative to Laura for giving her expert knowledge and labor to make a difference in our community's environment. The Des Moines
Legacy Foundation is to be complimented for recognizing and publicly awarding a special award to a volunteer like Laura Hartema. Thank you Laura,from all of us.
Laura was presented her LEGACY Award at the first Des Moines Arts Commission Summer Concert, Destination Des Moines Smoke on the Water BBQ, and Des
Moines Legacy Foundation's Bids for Kids at Des Moines Beach Park on Wednesday evening, July 12th by president of the Des Moines Legacy Foundation,
Gene Achziger. 2018 LEGACY Award nomination forms will be available to the community in January 2018.
Written by: Lillian Claunch
Des Moines Legacy Foundation Launches a Citywide Playground Project Community Campaign
The Des Moines Citywide Playground Project approved by City Council in March of this year will provide the designs to repair and replace play structures at seven of Des Moines Parks and to create a new play area at Steven J. Underwood Memorial Park. This action is the first of many steps that will be taken within the next three years to restore City's aging park play areas.
The play equipment located at Cecil Powell Neighborhood Park was removed due to safety concerns in 2013 and the neighborhood has asked for the equipment to be replaced. The removal of play equipment at Kiddie Park, Westwood Park and Wooton Park is also eminent, likely within the next year or two. And, there is strong community support for play areas to be installed at Des Moines Beach Park where the play area was removed over a decade ago due to flooding and infrastructure repairs and at Steven J. Underwood Memorial Park where a play area has not been installed due to lack of funding. The City's challenge is the lack of funding resources to make the necessary improvements.
The removal of the Cecil Powell Park play area is a big loss to my neighborhood. It was the safe gathering place where my family and neighbors met to play
and get to know each other. The removal of the play structure was devastating to me and my sense of community. That is why my family and Powell Homes have made
contributions to the Legacy Foundation to help to have it replaced.
— Brandie Holmes- Neighborhood Park Advocate
Tree of Life!
The Des Moines Legacy Foundation is excited to announce we have purchased The Tree of Life, a beautiful piece of art that resides outside of the Des Moines Activity Center off of 216th Street in Des Moines.
The piece of art was created by local artist Kris Vermeer.
We purchased, The Tree of Life, for its beauty, location and specifically because of the title and what the Des Moines Legacy Foundation helps provide at the activity center for senior adults. It fits perfectly with part of our mission which is to "Improve, and create community and park and recreation services."
Kris has stated "It's an honor to have the Tree of Life be part of Des Moines!" and we couldn't agree more!
Meals on Wheels Freezers!
The Des Moines Legacy Foundation plays a large role in our cities Meals on Wheels for Seniors Program. This program is housed and run out of the Des Moines Activity Center. We purchased a large freezer back in 2012 and donated it to the program. The Meals on Wheels Program has grown with more need for meals and we have just purchased and donated ANOTHER freezer to accommodate the growing demand! We are proud to help such a worthy program provide nutritious meals to seniors in need!
Coloring Books & Mosaics Class!
The Des Moines Legacy Foundation supports many Senior Activities by purchasing and donating classes, training, materials and supplies for Seniors at the Des Moines Activity Center. Our latest activities include a 6 week Mosaics Class at the Des Moines Activity Center where seniors will be taught skills and techniques and then actually create their own small mosaics! Another activity adventure includes Adult Coloring Books and scheduled Coloring Book Time at the Activity Center so Seniors can ease stress, unplug, relax or mingle with friends! All of these activities are offered to our Seniors at little or no cost to those participating!
Feel Good Friday Segment on King5 News
Featuring one of our volunteers, Dick Body, and his participation in the Meals on Wheels Program that runs out of the Des Moines Activity Center and is supported in part by the Des Moines Legacy Foundation.
See King5 Video
NEW STOVE FOR DES MOINES/NORMANDY PARK SENIOR CENTER!
Our nutrition program volunteers are HAPPY with our new 2015 Vulcan Stove purchased with Bayside Brunch Funds by the Des Moines Legacy Foundation.
Installed Sunday, May 3, at Des Moines/Normandy Park Senior Activity Center, the new stove replaces a 1964 stove that was way past its prime to cook
daily nutritious meals for seniors sixty and older. THANK YOU DES MOINES LEGACY FOUNDATION AND TO ALL OF OUR BAYSIDE BRUNCH SUPPORTERS…..especially
Des Moines Legacy Foundation Funds Dance for Parkinsons
Recent participant surveys from the Des Moines Legacy Foundation funded Dance for Parkinson's class share the following highly rated comments:
"I have a greater sense of body control, strength and flexibility, I have enjoyed the social engagement and meeting new people in the classes, My mental and physical health and well being has improved, I feel more positive in my daily life, I connected with my imagination and creative side; I would enjoy taking more Dance for Parksinson's classes."
Dance for Parkinson's is an eight week free program for senior adults who have movement issues. Taught by professional dancers from Seattle Theatre Group, the program is in its fourth year in Des Moines, held at Des Moines/Normandy Park Activity Center. Offered three sessions per year, the music is "live" and so is the laughter!
Sonju Community Garden Partners With United Way for the 2014 Day of Caring
Eighty-six volunteers from the Sonju Community Garden, Microsoft, and King County Library Systems worked all day Friday, September 19, to clear brush, pick
apples, make new pea patch plots, and paint two fantastic art windows on the barn. Thanks to their efforts, the garden and orchard are tidy and ready for
winter. Partnerships such as this, in addition to our sponsorship by the Des Moines Legacy Foundation and other community members, and the City of
Des Moines, make our garden grow! Thank you!
Click On Images
Des Moines Arts Commission
The Des Moines Legacy Foundation is proud to be a sponsor of the Des Moines Beach Park Summer Concerts. Funds from the Des Moines Legacy
Foundation paid for the Honor Aging Mural in downtown Des Moines.
- Rotating Sculpture Project
- Summer Concerts in the Park (Des Moines Beach Park)
- Honor Aging Mural in downtown Des Moines
Park improvements in Des Moines are a top priority to ensure our foundation's vision and mission. We are proud of what the foundation has provided to date:
- Grandstand at Field House Park
- Steven J. Underwood Ball field
- Big Toy playground at Water Tower Park
- Memorial Bench program
- Grants for improvements at Midway Park, Wooton Park, Des Moines Beach Park and Des Moines Field House
Funds provided by the foundation have built improved and enhanced additions to the activity center:
- Large outdoor patio and public garden
- Outdoor patio furniture
- Storage closet addition
- Flag pole
Equipment and Supplies
Des Moines Legacy Foundation works hard to provide equipment and supplies critical to our parks, recreation and senior services programs,
when city funds are not available.
- Washer/dryer for the senior center nutrition program
- New freezer for the Meals on Wheels program
- Medical lending equipment for the lending closet at the senior center
- New coffee system for the senior center
- Emergency kits for low income seniors
- Defibrillators for the Field House and the Activity Center
- Wheelchair restraint system for the Senior Shuttle transportation program
- Fourteen passenger bus for the recreation and senior services programs
- Support and staffing for the Food Bank summer lunch programs
- Community Reader Board at the activity center
- Senior softball team equipment
- New 55" smart TV for the activity center Wii athletes
- Lobby furniture for the activity center
- Special event supplies and equipment
- Special chair for senior foot care program
- Dance for Parkinson's
- Youth Recreation scholarships
- Seniors Creating art
- Hot Lunches and Meals on wheels healthy food supplements at Des Moines Senior Center
- Medical Lending
- Participation scholarships for older adults
- Volunteer Appreciation
- Senior Dental Screenings
- Senior HYDE shuttle transportation
- Senior Sunday Dances
- Take Back Your Meds
- Senior foot care scholarships