Percussion Park's Musical Launch

Taylor, Texas, residents celebrated the opening of its new interactive and inclusive park, Percussion Park in Murphy Park, at the weekend with a musical masterpiece.

Creating community connection through music, the new park is available to the local community to make music with friends and families. Turning the idea of a musical park into a reality has taken four years and was driven by Good Life Taylor, the brainchild of a group of friends wanting to celebrate and promote healthy families and outdoor activities.

Good Life Taylor's idea was to create a vibrant, creative, musical space within the City of Taylor parks system where people of all ages can gather, create music, and enjoy the outdoors. Good Life Taylor offered to pay for the development of a concept plan for the playground and to fund construction costs not covered by other sources, and they have been hard at work raising funds for the past several years. The playground, created in the shape of a musical treble clef, is located in Murphy Park between a lake and a swimming pool in an area previously a sand volleyball court. The playground includes native landscaping, a shade structure, and site furnishings. The total cost of construction was approximately $225,000. A grant received from Texas Parks, and Wildlife helped move the project one step further to fruition.

Julie Rydell, Executive Director of Good Life Taylor, said in a Taylor Texas press release, “This playground will be for all ages and all abilities, which is an important focus for Good Life Taylor. It will also provide needed exposure to the creative arts for the City’s young people, many of whom are not introduced to music in school until middle or high school. We saw in the City’s Parks Master Plan that there was a need for more spaces in Taylor parks that can reach multiple generations and also engage more people in creative activities, and we’re excited to be a part of a project that can help meet that need.”

Larry Foos, Director of the City’s Parks and Recreation Department, said the park would enhance the City of Taylor’s park system. “The City of Taylor is committed to enhancing our park system to benefit residents and visitors alike. We thank the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission for supporting the City of Taylor. We are especially grateful to Good Life Taylor for bringing this project to us and raising the remaining funds. I know that the Percussion Playground will be a great addition to Murphy Park and the entire parks system and will be enjoyed by Taylor residents for many years.”

The music park consists of five outdoor musical instruments from Percussion Play. A Street Quartet was chosen, which comprises a Large Babel Drum, Cajon Drum, Emperor Chimes, and, Handpipes. Additionally, a Sansa Rimba Xylophone was included.

The Percussion Park was officially opened with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Saturday, February 18. Attendees were treated to a special interactive performance by Soulshine Rhythm Experience, who helped drum up the fun and celebrate Taylor’s newest all-ages, all-abilities musical playground.