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Unity Plaza To Offer Free Events For Jacksonville Community

Lindsey Kilbride

New free events for the Jacksonville community are planned, as the Unity Plaza urban park officially opened its grounds on Tuesday.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony marked phase one of the community spot in the riverfront Brooklyn neighborhood.


Unity Plaza is a nonprofit urban park and amphitheater. Today, it’s a concrete curved deck, with descending steps and seating overlooking and stage area and fountain.

Jen Jones is Executive Director of the park. She says it’s come a long way from the retention pond it was years ago.

“One of the critical elements that we lacked in our community are places where we come together through really cool, free inclusive, diversity-based events to celebrate our city and to really see each other,” Jones said.

The outdoor venue already offers free classes to the community. Karen Bandy teaches meditation at the plaza.

“People are recognizing it as a place to come,” Bandy said. “And also it’s very central in the city and so it’s good for reaching a large segment of the population.”

Jones says people can expect the opening of a new outdoor restaurant, retail kiosks and daily live music and outdoor art.

On Friday evening, the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra will play a free concert at the plaza on Riverside Avenue.