Trinity Park Foundation

Separate from the Trinity Park Neighborhood Association, the Trinity Park Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable entity that owns and cares for the Park and also focuses on the neighborhood’s medians, public art, and trees.

Note from Shelley Dekker, TPF President: “Almost every time I am working in the park, I am thanked, most often by people I do not know. The Trinity Park is important to neighbors and visitors to Durham, as well as to a great number of people who come from other Durham neighborhoods to use the park. The Foundation’s mission is to preserve and enhance it, and I would even say it is our job to love and care for it.“


The Trinity Park Foundation was formed in 1980 to purchase the land at the corner of Watts St. and West Trinity Ave. that is now known as The Trinity Park. Its founders wanted it to be a place of recreation for people of all ages. They wanted to maintain the “tot lot,” as the mostly-vacant lot with a slide and sandbox was then known, but they also wanted plenty of benches, walkways, and gardens which would appeal to adults as well.

The garden areas and trees that border the park along Watts and Trinity provide a green buffer from the street, creating a beautiful, fragrant, and relaxing setting. The gardens were greatly enhanced in 2005 when the Foundation received a matching grant from the Durham Open Space and Trails Commission, with the Foundation promising to maintain the gardens.

Garden upkeep and the Blossom Garden Club

Since 2005 the gardens have been maintained by a group of dedicated volunteers known as the Blossom Garden Club. These women hold several park workdays a year and take turns watering the park in the summer.  Over the years, they have ordered truckloads of mulch and compost and spread it themselves. This fall, they scouted local nurseries for drought-tolerant native plants, purchased them, and planted them. Many of them do not even live in the neighborhood but give their time nonetheless!

With the average age of the Club’s members rising into the 70s, the Foundation hopes to support the Club’s ongoing efforts in the park gardens by installing 1) an irrigation system, and 2) decorative short fencing to protect the plantings from being trampled by dogs and people cutting through the gardens to enter the park. 

Trinity Avenue median: a big project 

The Foundation is forming a long-term plan for the large median that runs along Trinity Ave. between Buchanan and Watts. The City of Durham owns the land but does not wish to maintain it.  Significant volunteer effort has already gone into planting parts of the median with bulbs, but still the weeds dominate.  Stay tuned.

Other projects and ongoing efforts

  • Installing bronze labels for our neighborhood artwork
  • Possibly replace the utility pole light in the park with a decorative street lamp
  • Making a “Trinity Park Tree Trail,” which will highlight and celebrate the diversity of trees within the urban arboretum that is our neighborhood. 
  • Maintaining the Little Free Library in the park, thanks to Sue Concannon. Please remember the LFL when you are donating old books!

If you have ideas for capital improvements for the neighborhood or would like to volunteer, we would love to hear from you. Contact us at