Parks & Recreation 75th Anniversary


-The Mesa Parks, Recreation and Commercial Facilities Department is committed to providing sustainable facilities and opportunities to enhance the quality of life and well being of our community.-

75th Anniversary Logo

Mesa Parks and Recreation is proud to be celebrating 75 Years of Service to the community!

We are proud to serve our guests, and to make a difference in their lives.
Come recreate with us and let us make a difference in your life !

Join in the fun of celebrating Mesa Parks and Recreation 75 years of service to the Mesa community by participating in a recreation/leisure or sport opportunity each day. Beginning June 1st, we will be posting a different activity that you can enjoy by yourself, or with your family and friends. We hope you try some new programs, visit our parks, and re-visit some of the places and activities that you have enjoyed in the past.  Parks and Recreation - The Benefits are Endless!

Parks and Recreations FAQ's


It was 75 years ago when a group of civic leaders gathered together to create the Mesa Parks and Recreation Department. In April 1936 the City Council approved the creation of an organized department to help meet the growing demands of the community. Mesa at the time had a population of 7,224 people and hired Joseph S. Jarvis as the first Recreation Director. Since there were no funds to pay for Jarvis' salary, two School Board Members voted to contribute $1,200 each. Jarvis was able to improve park conditions and added recreational programs. In May 1943 Golden R. Tueller was hired to succeed Jarvis. Under his leadership five new parks were purchased: Evergreen, Stapley, Stewart, Escobedo and Pioneer. That same year Mesa was recognized as having one of the nation's best recreation programs.

By 1968, the department grew into six divisions: Administration, Aquatics, Golf, Museum, Parks and Other Recreation. The department's success was and continues to be the partnership developed with Mesa Public Schools. The result of cooperative usage between school facilities and recreation programs continues to be a bright spot for both organizations. Swimming pools were and continue to be constructed at Mesa Public Schools.

Ten years later, the Mesa Parks system grew to 17 parks with 141 acres developed and 624 acres undeveloped or partly developed. It had one municipal golf course and construction was underway to build a new Mesa Community Center (now the Mesa Amphitheatre) and Centennial Hall. Parks were now built to provide diverse recreational activities from basketball, tennis, horseshoe, shuffleboard, baseball, softball, handball with lighted fields. Indoor and outdoor recreational centers were also in the works to enhance the growing demand for organized sports and youth activities. With this growth, the Parks Department operating budget grew to $2.5 million for fiscal year 1976-1977.

Now 75 years later, the Mesa Parks, Recreation and Commercial Facilities serves more than 467,000 residents over 132 square miles. Mesa now has 57 parks and 133 basins with 71 multipurpose athletic fields and eight specialty sports complexes. Its home to two municipal golf courses, a state-of-the art recreational center, two tennis complexes, nine swimming pools and aquatic complexes and winter home of the Chicago Cubs. Within the last 10 years Mesa built two skate parks, held over thousands of festivals and concerts at the Mesa Amphitheater and HoHoKam Stadium all while providing excellent award-wining recreational programs for youth and adults.

"Cities become a home when families have great places to play," Mesa Mayor Scott Smith said.  "I congratulate Mesa Park and Recreation on 75 years of service and know they will continue to provide quality and exciting places and programs for all of us to enjoy."

To celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the Mesa Parks, Recreation and Commercial Facilities Department, on-going events will be held throughout the year.

"We want to encourage our residents to take advantage of what we have to offer and maybe try something new," Mesa Parks, Recreation and Commercial Facilities Director, Marc Heirshberg said. "We'll be holding special events, movie nights, swim days and other fun activities to celebrate this milestone."



   Your Place to Play

Parks, Recreation & Commercial Facilities
200 S. Center St.,
Building 1
Mesa, AZ  85210




For after-hours incidents please call 480-644-2262 

Contact us

Facebook    Twitter

Join our Email List

The Mesa Parks, Recreation and Commercial Facilities Department is committed to providing sustainable facilities and opportunities to enhance the quality of life and well being of our community.

Visit our other facilities:

Dobson Ranch Golf Course

Hohokam Stadium

Mesa Convention Center

Mesa Amphitheatre

Mesa Cemetery