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For Immediate Release:
February 02, 2015
Media Contact:
Laura Phillips
[email protected]

Designed to inspire kids to be active in the outdoors, Amelia Earhart Park's popular ''Tom Sawyer's Play Island'' receives impressive creative makeover

(MIAMI, February 2, 2015) - A fort-style tree house with climbers, spinners, slides, balance beams, swings, and musical instruments to play are part of the new playground amenities set to debut at Tom Sawyer’s Play Island at Amelia Earhart Park, located at 401 E. 65 Street in Hialeah. The playground area is approximately 7,500 square feet, making it the largest playground in the Miami-Dade County Parks system. Residents are invited to join the Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department and Miami-Dade County District 13 Commissioner Esteban Bovo Jr. for the grand opening and dedication ceremonies taking place on Saturday, February 7, 2015 at 10:00 a.m.

The playground is designed for children ages 2-12 and is fully accessible for all-inclusive play. Existing amenities at this site include a canopy of mature Live Oaks, natural boulders and a walk-through cave.

The Parks Department, in conjunction with contractors HG Construction and No Fault Industries, recently completed the playground improvement project, replacing older playground equipment. Other upgrades included improvements to the island’s landscaping, pavilion and fencing, and the installation of new flooring in the cave. The project cost was approximately $500,000 and was funded by the “Building Better Communities” General Obligation Bond Program (BBC-GOB).

“This is very exciting news for Amelia Earhart Park and the many Miami-Dade residents and visitors that look to this park for quality health-minded recreation with their families,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez.  “Playgrounds like this are inspiring kids to get outdoors and be active.”
“I am delighted to see the new and improved Tom Sawyer Play Island Playground,” said Commissioner Bovo. “These new playground facilities were much needed and much deserved. I highly encourage residents to bring their children here for regular visits and experience all that this beautiful park has to offer.”

“This new development is a great example of our commitment to providing diverse recreational options that are fun and offer adventure, while helping to improve the health and wellness of park users,” said Miami-Dade County Parks Director Jack Kardys.  “Creative playgrounds like this one inspire kids to play outside and be active.”

The 515-acre Amelia Earhart Park also features five crystal  blue lakes, picnic facilities, a children’s playground, an 18-hole disc golf course, a five-acre fenced dog park, a mountain-bike trail, and a new multi-use recreational pathway with a bike wash station that opened in October. In addition, the park is home to the Bill Gram Farm Village, Miami Wakeboarding Complex and Soccer 5 Soccer Complex.

For directions and information about recreational activities at Amelia Earhart Park visit or call 305-685-8389.

About the Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department 
Nationally accredited, a three-time winner of the NRPA National Gold Medal Award, winner of the 2013 Florida Governor’s Sustained Excellence Award and the 2009 Florida Governor’s Sterling Award for excellence in management and operations, Miami-Dade County Parks is the third largest county park system in the United States, consisting of 260 parks and 12,825 acres of land.  It is one of the most unique park and recreation systems in the world.  Made up of more than just playgrounds and athletic fields, it also comprises out-of-school, sports-development, and summer-camp programs; programs for active older adults and people with disabilities; educational nature centers and nature preserves; environmental restoration efforts; arts and culture programs and events; the renowned Zoo Miami and the Deering Estate at Cutler; the Crandon Tennis Center, home of the Miami Open; golf courses; beaches; marinas; campgrounds; pools; and more.  For information about Miami-Dade County Parks call 3-1-1, or visit

Miami-Dade County Parks is supported by The Parks Foundation of Miami-Dade a non-profit 501(c)3 organization supporting the Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department’s efforts to further develop Miami-Dade County’s world-class parks system for residents and visitors.  Its mission is to create a healthier, more livable and sustainable Miami community by ensuring the implementation of the Parks Open Space Master Plan and the development of year-round park and recreation programs for local children, adults and people with disabilities.  For more information on the Parks Foundation, please visit

To request material in accessible format, information on access for persons with disabilities, or sign language interpreter services (7 days in advance), call 305-755-7848.