In just the three years since their inception, the Ellanor C. Lawrence Park Friends (ECLP Friends) have evolved into an important asset to the Park and the community.  They have been instrumental in developing new and engaging park activities, building awareness about events and overall in encouraging community members to get involved as volunteers, protectors and supporters of Ellanor C. Lawrence Park. 

ECLP Friends got off to quick start just two months after their inception, launching “Parkemon” to help get kids outside and having fun together during COVID.  Next, they created a beloved and enduring community event: ParktoberFest, now in its 3rd year, featuring live music, food and local vendors.  These events brought community members to the park and showcased the best of what it had to offer. The group earned an Eakin Award in 2022 for these efforts and others in partnering with the Fairfax County Park Authority to preserve, invigorate and protect the park.

Moreover, just this year, they started a Friends Scholarship fund based on “Nature for All” to help improve access to the parks for field trips and a variety of other community programs.  Together this group has secured grants and fundraised more than $25,000 for the Stewardship Education Center and for the STEAM Loop.  In short, ECLP Friends has greatly benefited the Park and made an extraordinarily positive impact on supporting the Park’s Stewardship goals and in engaging the community.

“I am pleased to recognize the Ellanor C. Lawrence Friends group as this year’s Sully District Community Champion.  Their dedication to the park and the environment helps to make E.C. Lawrence a great place to visit.  The annual Parktoberfest is a wonderful event that brings people to the park to see vendors, listen to music and enjoy the outdoors.  They have also been instrumental in getting sponsorships for the STEAM features at the Education Center that will open later this year.”