Pogo Park secures a highly competitive $5 million Clean California grant from Caltrans. This grant will be used to complete the Yellow Brick Road® and make additional improvements to Harbour-8 Park. In September, we break ground on the Harbour-8 Park Expansion Project.


After 13 years of work, Pogo Park starts construction on the Yellow Brick Road®. We also start our Mock-Up Design Process for Harbour-8 Park. And after being forced to shut our park programs because of COVID, we are happy to reopen our programs at Elm Playlot.


Pogo Park secures an $8.5 million Prop 68 grant from the State of California to design and build Phase II of Harbour-8 Park. We complete the final design for the Yellow Brick Road®. When COVID-19 closes Elm Playlot, we invest in upgrading the park’s infrastructure and in our Team’s training and capacity. 


Pogo Park designs and builds the Harbour-8 Improvement Project which includes an entry archway, brick wall, Calming Circle, bioswale, and Mini Play Field. This Project is Phase I of Harbour-8 Park’s development and renovation. 


Pogo Park expands our growing list of programs at Elm Playlot. We partner with The Conservation Fund to acquire critical parcels of land next to Harbour-8 Park. We kick off a multi-year research project with UC Berkeley to study the impacts of Elm Playlot on community health and well-being. 


The San Francisco Foundation recognizes Pogo Park with its prestigious “Community Leadership Award.” The Trust for Public Land also features Elm Playlot among other outstanding parks around the world in their “Field Guide for Parks and Creative Placemaking.”


The State of California Parks Department names Pogo Park as an exemplary model of community engagement. Pogo Park partners with The Conservation Fund to acquire a critical 17,500 square foot parcel of land adjacent to Harbour-8 Park.


Pogo Park staffs Elm Playlot with members of the Community Development Team (CDT) in order to serve thousands of children who live within walking distance. Pogo Park writes a winning $6.4 million grant on behalf of the City of Richmond to build the first leg of the “Yellow Brick Road” – a project to build a safe walk-bike street through the heart of the neighborhood.


Pogo Park completes its major renovation of Elm Playlot. The new park includes a community center with a kitchen, bathrooms; zip-line, disc swings and a “Global Village” of child-sized houses; a separate tot-lot for toddlers; the “chill zone” where children participate in arts and crafts, play chess, or build with blocks.


Pogo Park partners with the Trust for Public Land and the city of Richmond to transform an abandoned, two-block section of the Richmond Greenway into our second “Pogo Park” – Harbour-8 Park.


Pogo Park takes possession of the house at 720 Elm and discovers that the 700 square foot home has historical significance. The team meets with local architect and restoration experts to reimagine this house in the framework of a park office and community center, and bring out its long lost historical features. Adding a house to Elm Playlot location changes the design plan for the park, and so the design has to be recreated.


While waiting to secure construction permits, Pogo Park builds a “Pop-Up Park” at Elm Playlot consisting of temporary play structures (a sandbox, hillside slide, stage, and “Global Village” of child-sized houses) and provides free play programming for children on a drop-in basis. The Pop-Up Park is a hit!


Pogo Park partners with Berkeley design firm MIG and the city of Richmond to secure a $1.94 million grant from the State of California Parks Department to rebuild Elm Playlot based on the community’s vision. With a $55,000 loan from friends, Pogo Park acquires a 700 foot home adjacent to Elm Playlot; this house will later be transformed into the park office.  


Toody and EPAC construct a full-scale Mock-Up of their proposed design for Elm Playlot on-site. They work with partner Scientific Art Studio to design and build a small children’s play area at Evergreen Lodge near Yosemite National Park. While building this playground, they acquire basic construction skills that will be needed in the future!


Pogo Park focuses on transforming Elm Playlot, a .5 acre “pocket park” that lies in the heart of Richmond’s Iron Triangle neighborhood. To re-imagine Elm Playlot, Pogo Park hires, trains, and empowers a small team of community residents to plan, design, and rebuild Elm Playlot themselves. The original, 8-member team dubs themselves “EPAC” (Elm Playlot Action Committee). 


The journey begins. Social entrepreneur Toody Maher founds Pogo Park on a $19 desk from IKEA with a goal to bring dispirited city parks to life. She visits all 56 parks in Richmond and sets her sights on transforming Elm Playlot, a dispirited city park and playground in one of Richmond’s toughest neighborhoods. Toody obtains a fiscal sponsor, raises $30,000 from donors and another $30,000 in matching funds from the City of Richmond.