Patrick Baird

(Rock Hill, S.C.) — The city of Rock Hill opened Miracle Park to the public in late September and the all-inclusive park has quickly become a popular destination, but organizers are continuing to move forward on plans to expand the project.

The idea for Miracle Park has been years in the making and currently the park includes a playground, sensory wall, a Miracle League baseball field and a traditional baseball field that is designed to accommodate people of all abilities.

“It doesn’t matter who you are, you’re also included,” said Tina Cook, a staff member at Miracle Park.

The park began as a public and private partnership between the city of Rock Hill and the York County Disabilities Foundation.

“One of our local volunteers saw his nephew playing in a Miracle League in Greenville South Carolina. He came back and said, ‘We need this in Rock Hill. Rock Hill is known for sports tourism, so let’s do it.’
That was about five years ago,” said Terry Hagen, recreation programmer for Miracle Park and the city of Rock Hill. “He got together with some of our other volunteers, our mayor, our parks and recreation director and all of these amazing people somehow made it all happen.”

The park currently contains a variety of different features that have been popular with the community.

“We have a playground for able-bodied people and differently able-bodied people. There is exercise equipment for elderly people, there is exercise equipment for adults, there are swings where babies and mothers can swing together, there are slides for people of limited mobility and there are seesaws and a merry-go-rounds for people in and out of wheelchairs,” said Hagen.

“On top of all of that you will see the Miracle League baseball team playing on the most amazing field you’ve ever seen,” she said.

The Miracle League began play in October with the help of volunteers who act as buddies for the players on the specially designed field.

However, organizers have plans to expand the property in phase II of the project, by adding additional baseball and multipurpose fields, a retail store and a fishing pond.

Miracle Park is collecting donations and has drawn a number of corporate sponsors, including the Carolina Panthers, Rock Hill Coca-Cola, Comporium, Founders Federal Credit Union, Williams and Fudge, Winthrop University and others.