June 1st, 2012

For Additional Information:

Colin Moss, Parks and Recreation Department

(208) 489-0551



Grand Opening Celebration Activities Announced

For Julius M. Kleiner Memorial Park


Meridian, ID – (June 9, 2012) – A full day of activities for the grand opening of Julius M. Kleiner Memorial Park in Meridian on June 9, 2012 has been announced.  Julius M. Kleiner Memorial Park is located near the corner of Eagle Road and Fairview Avenue, at 1900 N. Records Road. This will be Meridian's largest park at 60 acres.


The grand opening festivities begin early in the morning with a hot air balloon launch at 6:30 am from the park.  All are welcome to come watch the launch.  At 1:00 pm, the ribbon-cutting ceremony will begin at the bandshell and amphitheater with speakers including Lt. Governor Brad Little, Mayor Tammy de Weerd and representatives from the Kleiner Park Trust.


“There is great excitement and interest in the opening of the Julius M. Kleiner Park. Citizens from around the valley had have had a sneak peek during the Veterans Rock of Honor dedication, or at the recent opening of new Meridian Senior Center. This is an amazing gift, a $25 million donation from Gene Kleiner to our community, the Treasure Valley, and the State of Idaho.  We owe him a debt of gratitude and our heartfelt thanks and we look forward to having the community come out and show their gratitude,” said Mayor Tammy de Weerd


Following the ribbon-cutting ceremony, the park will burst with activities for the whole family.  From 2:00-5:30pm, activities will include live music from Big Wow and Hoochie Coochie Men, inflatable toys, face painting, bocce ball lessons, trolley rides around the park, guided park tours, and a park scavenger hunt with prizes. 


In addition, June 9th is the Idaho Department of Fish and Game’s statewide free fishing day and Sportsman’s Warehouse will be on hand with fishing poles for kids to use.  Then at 6:00pm, the Meridian Symphony Orchestra will cap off an incredible day with the inaugural performance in the bandshell and amphitheater. This area has lawn seating, so attendees may wish to bring blankets or lawn chairs for added comfort.


The park, which broke ground in July 2010, is a $25 Million donation to the City of Meridian by Gene Kleiner.  Gene inherited the land from his father, Julius Kleiner, who bought the land in 1944 and operated a dairy farm on it from the 1950’s until his death in 1972.  Instead of selling the land, Gene Kleiner chose to build a memorial to his father and has done so with a turn-key park donation that includes not only the land, but also the park construction. 


The park features 3 family picnic shelters, 2 large group picnic shelters, a bandshell and amphitheater, 2 large fishing ponds, a new Meridian Senior Center, the Rock of Honor Memorial, a playground and splash pad, 3.3 miles of walking paths, an arboretum, bocce ball courts, a sand volleyball court, basketball courts, and lots of open grass areas. 


“We are very excited for the grand opening of Julius M. Kleiner Memorial Park,” said Parks and Recreation Director Steve Siddoway.  “This is a passive park; we don’t have the ball fields and the soccer fields that other sports-oriented parks have.  This is a place truly that is meant to create family memories, to reflect on the important things and to slow down and enjoy life.”


For more information about Julius M. Kleiner Memorial Park, visit the Meridian Parks and Recreation website at and visit the “Future Parks/Construction Projects” page or contact the Meridian Parks and Recreation office at 888-3579 or


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The City of Meridian is located at the center of the Treasure Valley in southwest Idaho, minutes from the State Capitol. Founded as a farming community in 1893 and incorporated as a city in 1903, Meridian is now one of Idaho’s largest and fastest growing communities. As the home to many young families, Meridian is a vibrant community whose mission is to be a premier city to live, work and raise a family and was selected in 2010 by Family Circle Magazine as one of their Top 10 Best Cities for Families and Money Magazine as one of its 100 Best Places to Live. For more information about Meridian, visit