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Houston Matters

Evelyn’s Park: The Birth Of A New Urban Green Space In Bellaire

Michael Hagerty takes us on a tour of Evelyn’s Park and learns about the process of turning private land into a public green space.

On Saturday (Jan. 20), Evelyn's Park in Bellaire will host its monthly Market in the Park event, with a collection of vendors on the park grounds. The park is less than a year old and has a slightly different origin story.

For a century, a spot at the corner of Bellaire Boulevard and Newscastle Drive in southwest Houston was home to a nursery that sold plants and landscaping materials. Teas Nursery was the very first business in Bellaire. But after closing in 2009, two brothers, named Jerry and Maury Rubenstein, bought the land and gave it to the City of Bellaire – under the condition that it be turned into a park and named after their mother, Evelyn Rubenstein, a longtime resident of the area (and namesake of the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center) who loved nature.

The park opened April 22, 2017, and producer Michael Hagerty took a tour and learned about the process of turning private land into public green space.

  • A woman and her granddaughter try out the slides at Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
    A woman and her granddaughter try out the slides at Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
  • Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
    Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
  • The events center at Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
    The events center at Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
  • A historical marker at Evelyn's Park in Bellaire tells the story of one the city's oldest businesses, which formerly occupied the location. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
    A historical marker at Evelyn's Park in Bellaire tells the story of one the city's oldest businesses, which formerly occupied the location. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
  • (L-R) Scott Rubenstein, whose mother, Evelyn, is the namesake for Evelyn's Park in Bellaire; Patricia Ritter, president of Evelyn’s Park Conservancy; and Denton Ragland, executive director of Evelyn’s Park Conservancy. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
    (L-R) Scott Rubenstein, whose mother, Evelyn, is the namesake for Evelyn's Park in Bellaire; Patricia Ritter, president of Evelyn’s Park Conservancy; and Denton Ragland, executive director of Evelyn’s Park Conservancy. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
  • A walkway at Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
    A walkway at Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
  • A fountain at Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
    A fountain at Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
  • Butterflies honor donors on a wall at Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
    Butterflies honor donors on a wall at Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
  • Signage at the entrance to Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
    Signage at the entrance to Evelyn's Park in Bellaire. (Photo Credit: Michael Hagerty)
Michael Hagerty

Michael Hagerty

Senior Producer, Houston Matters

Michael Hagerty is the senior producer for Houston Matters. He's spent more than 20 years in public radio and television and dabbled in minor league baseball, spending four seasons as the public address announcer for the Reno Aces, the Triple-A affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks.

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