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City Council approves naming park after Nino Gallo

Park grand opening next summer
Nino Gallo 1
Nino Gallo, a supporter and pioneer in the Latinx community and Longmont resident (courtesy photo)

 

The City Council Tuesday night unanimously voted to name the Wertman open space in south central Longmont after long-time activist Nino Gallo, who died from COVID-19 in December 2020 but left a legacy of leadership in the local Latinx community.

The city was looking for a notable person to name the park and after talking to Latinx families and leaders officials quickly decided on Gallo, said Steven Ransweiler, Longmont’s senior project manager.

Adriana Perea — Gallo’s step-daughter — spoke virtually to the council Tuesday night and urged that the park be named after Gallo to help seal his legacy. 

“He was an extraordinary man who could connect with all people of all ages and backgrounds,” Perea said. Because he would be the first Latinx to have a Longmont park named after him, “this would have an impact on Latinx youth, his name could create curiosity and inspiration.”

Gallo’s work in community service for over two decades in Boulder County, led to the Longmont City Council, Boulder City Council and Boulder County Commissioners to declare Jan. 5 2021, as Nino Gallo Day. 

Longmont Councilor Aren Rodriguez said he worked with Gallo on voter registration drives and seeing a park named after him, “just warms my heart.”

“There is not a better person for this recognition,” Rodriguez said.

The council also unanimously passed a master plan for the 8.33 acre parcel, which lies south of Quail Road, east of U.S. 287 and north of Dry Creek #2. 

The park will boast a number of amenities including pickleball courts, open turf space, an off-leash dog area and a six-hole disc golf course, Ransweiler told the council.

He said the park’s grand opening should be next summer.

 

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