By Abi Cole
Weaverville – A Sunday evening (June 28) celebration marked the opening of Brookstone Park. Food trucks lined up in front of a soundstage featuring a live folk band while the scent of barbecue wafted down to the children’s carnival rides.
Hundreds of church and community members milled through fields of family-fun activities. Visitors enjoyed corn-hole tournaments, soccer games, and slide rides. Many attendees were churchgoers and friends. Others found the event online and connected with Brookstone for the first time, eager to socialize amidst COVID-19 restrictions. Masks were encouraged but not required.
All are welcome at the community space. Brookstone staff and volunteers hope that park visitors find a spiritual connection while enjoying the fields and trails. “This is no strings attached, this is just for the community and we hope that if you’re here God will speak to you and touch you,” said Elizabeth Ayers, a volunteer.
Brookstone Baptist Church purchased the 101-acre property off the Flat Creek exit in 2005. The Weaverville church campus building was developed in recent years and the sizable park is the latest addition.
Brookstone Park is open seven days a week from 6 am to dusk. The extensive outdoor space holds a playground, picnic tables, and walking and hiking trails open for anyone’s enjoyment. Three soccer fields will be used by local youth league teams for games and practices. The Brookstone Pavilion can be reserved via the Brookstone website for birthday parties and picnics.
“We knew we wanted a park, not because we’re in the park business. We knew we wanted a soccer field, not because we’re in the soccer business… We’re in the gospel business,” said Pastor Jim Dykes. “We knew that if we could provide a place where our community would come, then we would have the opportunity to share the gospel of Jesus Christ.”
Three other events are planned for the park later in the summer and autumn. A family game night in July and an August “kickoff” featuring singer Ellie Holcomb are events to look for in the coming months.