WESTMINSTER, Colo. - The Colorado Garden Show donated $50,000 to the construction of the Jessica Ridgeway Memorial Park on Thursday, boosting funds to a total of $353,000.
The Westminster Legacy Foundation plans to raise a total of $450,000 through donations for the project. The donations will fund improvements at Jessica Ridgeway Memorial Park, formerly Chelsea Park. The park honors Jessica Ridgeway, the 10-year-old Westminster resident who was abducted and murdered in October.
“We’re delighted to have this major donation from the Colorado Garden Show, and it moves us much closer to our final goal,” said Westminster Mayor Nancy McNally in a quote provided by the city. “It’s fitting that their organization, which gives horticulture-focused grants to so many organizations, will help us build Jessica’s park.”
In addition to the grant, the Colorado Garden Show will also provide booth space at the 54th Colorado Garden & Home Show, Feb. 9-17, at the Colorado Convention Center. The booth will accept donations throughout the show to help the meet the fundraising goal.
“This grant certainly aligns with our mission to fund horticulture-related projects, but beyond that, the park will be an incredible place for Jessica’s friends and the community to play and remember the incredible girl she was,” said Jim Fricke, executive director of the Colorado Garden Show.
Current designs for the new park include a zip line track ride, raised flower beds inscribed with knock-knock jokes and ribbon-themed benches and swings. The park’s theme is inspired by some of Jessica’s favorite things, including cheerleading, flowers and the color purple.
Ridgeway was abducted as she walked to meet her friends at Chelsea Park on her way to school. Jessica never arrived at the park, and her remains were found five days later.
Austin Reed Sigg was arrested and charged with Jessica's murder on Oct. 24.
Learn more about Jessica Ridgeway Memorial Park and how to donate on the Legacy Foundation's website.