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History of Kandle Park

In 1955, Leona Maude Kandle left the bulk of her estate to the Metropolitan Park District of Tacoma for the establishment of a public playground "for girls and women as well as boys and men". Ms. Kandle directed that the new park be called George B. Kandle Playfield, in honor of her late father.* The terms of the will provided a five-year period for the conversion of these holdings into cash.

The Park Board planned to use the funds to develop playgrounds adjacent to Downing Elementary and Stanley Elementary. Eventually all the money went to the development of Kandle Park, adjoining Downing Elementary – between North 23rd and North 26th and North Shirley Street and North Baltimore Streets on land owned by the Tacoma School District. The School District sold the land to the Park District in 1958 for $1,104. In 1960 the property was described as a 6-block area covered with brush.

Fred Henricksen, Metro Park's Board President, at the dedication of Kandle Park on July 1961In 1960, Harold Sitts of Sitts & Hill Engineers was hired to design the new park. The cost of the project was $120,229.65. Work began on June 30, 1960 and the dedication of the completed playfield was July 1961.

January 21, 1963 – The Park District wrote a letter of thanks to the Fire Department for flooding the Kandle Park basketball court so children could ice skate and sled.

May 11, 1979 – NW Boys Club applies for a building permit for a clubhouse on School District property adjacent to Downing Elementary and Kandle Park. The Club will share parking with Kandle Park.

1983 – Thanks to a Community Development Block Grant, $14,606.90 was spent to modify the restroom/playground building at Kandle Park to remove architectural barriers. The work was completed in 1984.

1994 – new play ground equipment installed
- Work consisted of demolition of damaged logs and replacing with same
- Demolition of entire section of horizontal ladder and its footings
- Install free-standing Ring Maze Big Toy