U.S. Bank Places to Play is a collaboration between U.S. Bank and the Minnesota Vikings that provides grant funding to non-profit, neighborhood-based organizations and schools in low- to moderate-income communities in Minnesota to improve the quality, safety and accessibility of local play spaces. As part of U.S. Bank’s Community Possible platform, this grantmaking initiative focuses on creating or improving parks, playgrounds, indoor/outdoor athletic facilities and repairing existing trails over three years.
U.S. Bank's community giving and engagement platform, Community Possible, focuses on three central themes: Work, Home and Play. We invest our time, resources and passion in economic development by supporting efforts to create stable jobs, better homes and vibrant communities.
As part of the focus on play, U.S. Bank is collaborating with the Minnesota Vikings on the U.S. Bank Places to Play program, a $1 million, three-year investment across the state of Minnesota. U.S. Bank Places to Play was introduced as part of the original U.S. Bank Stadium partnership announcement with the Minnesota Vikings in June 2015.
The following organizations have demonstrated strong plans to improve in-demand recreation spaces that are ready for execution. Their projects show a high level of community engagement and represent a diverse set of communities and play spaces across the state of Minnesota.
DinoMights Billy Lindsay Outdoor Hockey Rink
The project is to create an outdoor refrigerated hockey rink in the core of the Phillips West Neighborhood to increase positive recreation opportunities in a neighborhood possessing significant opportunity gaps. Refrigeration would complete the final phase of construction of the Lindsay outdoor rink and enable this recreational facility to nearly triple its hours of use.
Gary New Duluth Multi-sport Court
The multi-sport court will have basketball, pickle ball, four square and hop scotch to replace an existing basketball pad that is in poor condition. This project will create full access for Stowe Elementary School students to the Gary New Duluth Community Center and Recreation Area facilities, provide a safe place for active outdoor play and learning activities, and expand use to community members of all ages.
Outdoor Courts at the Y
The objective is to build an outdoor recreational venue at the Itasca County Family YMCA that will help meet the physical, emotional, and social needs of the community. This will be accomplished by constructing a multi-generational area with four square courts, a full-sized basketball court, and a six-court pickleball venue.
New and Updated School Playground
The current Elementary School playground is outdated, unsafe, and requires replacement. This project will replace the current playground equipment set. Not only do students use the equipment during the school day, but children who live in town use the playground as a gathering place outside of school hours.
Richfield Community Band Shell
Partnership Academy is partnering with the City of Richfield to build an outdoor performance facility, the Richfield Community Band Shell, in Veterans Memorial Park, Richfield's premier community park. Partnership Academy, along with many other community groups and organizations, will be utilizing the Band Shell for outdoor performances, community events and ceremonies.
Peavey Park Picnic Shelter
The construction of a picnic shelter is a key element of a plan designed to increase activity at Peavey Park and improve visibility and safety when using the park. The addition of a centrally-located picnic shelter, equipped with drinking fountains, will provide a shaded, accessible gathering space for park users of all ages
Sepak Takraw (Kato) Courts
Sepak takraw (Thai) or kato (Laotian) has caught the passion of the Hmong community. Permanent sepak takraw/kato outdoor courts will be constructed at the Duluth and Case Recreation Center and Marydale Park. To have Saint Paul be home to the first courts in the state is meaningful for the older generations and is a way for everyone to connect with and experience Hmong culture.
River Valley Education Center Sensory Playground
The new playground provides an outdoor space that helps meet students’ sensory, physical and social needs. Students, their families, and community members love the new playground and are learning that physical activity improves health and provides the development of lifelong skills.
Running, jumping and physical activities related to play develop good exercise habits and a better well-being. This project will rebuild the school playground, including the use of Poured-In-Place to make it accessible for all students, which will allow students a better play system to be physically active. Local families and daycares will have access to the playground after school hours.