U.S. Bank and Minnesota Vikings announce final Places to Play grants


U.S. Bank and the Minnesota Vikings today announced the third and final round of U.S. Bank Places to Play grant recipients, who will receive $350,000 to make possible projects that create or renovate parks, playgrounds and athletic facilities in low- to moderate-income communities in Minnesota.

Through the program, which launched alongside U.S. Bank Stadium in 2015, the bank donated $750,000 and the Minnesota Vikings $250,000 to community-based nonprofit organizations and local schools statewide over three years. The initiative aligns with the U.S. Bank Community Possible platform, which focuses the bank’s giving and volunteerism on creating opportunities for Work, Home and Play in its communities.

“We believe in the power of play – it brings joy, helps develop problem-solving skills, creativity and relationships and builds social and emotional learning,” said Reba Dominski, chief social responsibility officer at U.S. Bank and president of the U.S. Bank Foundation. “We’re excited to announce the final U.S. Bank Places to Play grant recipients, each of which creates opportunities for kids and families to learn, grow and make memories.” 

Here is a summary of the final round of recipients:

  • Appleton-Milan Elementary School, New and Updated School Playground (Appleton, MN). The grant will be used to replace the current elementary school’s 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.
  • DinoMights Billy Lindsay Outdoor Hockey Rink (Minneapolis). The grant will be used 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.
  • Itasca County Family YMCA, Outdoor Courts at the YMCA (Grand Rapids, MN). The grant will be used 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. 
  • Partnership Academy, Richfield Community Band Shell (Richfield, MN). Partnership Academy is partnering with the City of Richfield to build an outdoor performance facility, the Richfield Community Band Shell, in Veterans Memorial Park, which is 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.   
  • Phillips West Neighborhood Organization, Peavey Park Picnic Shelter (Minneapolis). 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.
  • River Valley Education Center Sensory Playground (Jordan, MN). The new playground will provide 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.
  • Saint Paul Parks & Recreation Conservancy, Sepak Takraw (Kato) Courts (St. Paul, MN – pictured above). 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. With these new courts, St. Paul will be home to the first courts in the state, which is meaningful for the older generations and is a way for everyone to connect with and experience Hmong culture. 
  • Stowe Elementary School, Gary New Duluth Multi-Sport Court (Duluth, MN). 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.
  • Walker Hackensack Akeley School District, Playground Rebuild (Walker, MN). 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. 

About U.S. Bank

U.S. Bancorp, with 74,000 employees and $460 billion in assets as of March 31, 2018, is the parent company of U.S. Bank, the fifth-largest commercial bank in the United States. The Minneapolis-based bank blends its branch and ATM network with mobile and online tools that allow customers to bank how, when and where they prefer. U.S. Bank is committed to serving its millions of retail, business, wealth management, payment, commercial and corporate, and investment services customers across the country and around the world as a trusted financial partner, a commitment recognized by the Ethisphere Institute naming the bank a 2018 World’s Most Ethical Company. Visit U.S. Bank online or follow on social media to stay up to date with company news.

About Community Possible

Community Possible is the corporate giving and engagement platform at U.S. Bank, focused on the areas of Work, Home and Play. The company invests in programs that provide stable employment, a safe place to call home and a community connected through arts, culture, recreation and play. Philanthropic support through the U.S. Bank Foundation and corporate giving program reached $58.4 million in 2017. Visit usbank.com/communitypossible.

More information about the U.S. Bank Places to Play program is available at usbank.com/placestoplay


Susan Beatty, U.S. Bank Public Affairs and Communications

612.303.9229, susan.beatty@usbank.com


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