Check out this thoughtful article in Crosscut about Kubota Garden, a park that has received two WWRP grants. Author Alex Gallo-Brown writes that “the South Seattle sanctuary is a testament to the power of public space and the promise of racial integration.”
“Kubota Garden is part of Rainier Valley’s history of racial integration and cohabitation. In the early 1980s, after Rainier Beach was targeted by condominium developers, the garden was designated a historical landmark by the city of Seattle. Six years later, the Kubotas sold their property to the city, which has maintained the garden as a public park ever since. Antonia Angeles Hare, a lifelong resident of Rainier Beach, remembers visiting the garden as a child with her friends and telling ghost stories at night after the park had closed. Now a new mother, she routinely brings her children to the park to “forest bathe.” By exposing them to the air and pollens of the garden, she hopes to strengthen their immune systems. The garden is a vital resource for the community, she says, in part because it serves as a welcoming space for people of color. “You go there to escape a lot of different things,” says Hare, who is Filipina and white. “The fact that it has grown to be a place that everybody in the community can enjoy but it’s not a white pillar [is important]. It’s a minority space that everybody can enjoy for its beauty.”
Read the full story.