COLUMBIA — Members of the community are raising money to help Boone County Pinnacles Youth Foundation restore areas of the Pinnacles Youth Park.
The Pinnacles Youth Park is located about 12 miles north of Columbia off U.S. 63 and operates as a private park.
The 70 acres of natural open space has been available for public use for more than 50 years.
The park was deeded to the youth of Boone County in 1965. The Boone County Pinnacles Youth Foundation took over operations and uses only donations and volunteer labor for maintenance and upkeep.
The Columbia community has stepped up recently to support fundraising efforts for the park. Como Fire and Smoke has organized a GoFundMe to assist with fundraising. As of Monday, $700 of the $2,000 goal had been raised.
The restaurant will soon dedicate a day at the restaurant where 20% of that day's revenue will go directly to helping the foundation.
The foundation is hoping to update is the parking lot, roofs on the shelter structures used for events, and the 1976 park manager trailer.
The park has been utilized for family events and different youth group events, including church groups, picnics, scouting events, and more.
"Our family, we enjoy coming out here as today we're out here having a little lunch, " said Greg Kelly, who was visiting the park Monday. "I was raised in this area and I've been coming out here with the scouts, we used to camp out here."
Pinnacles Board of Directors President Phillip Burk said he appreciates the community's initiative to help keep the park up to standard condition.
Burk said he's excited to see what they can accomplish with the community's help.
"Just asking the community for help, they truly respond, " Burke said. "They give a lot to the park, we really enjoy the outreach, the give back to the park itself."
Many of the park structures haven't had any renovations since they were built in the 1970s.
Kelly said his family has been in the area for years and believes that the renovations will benefit everyone.
"I think it's great, we already love the place," Kelly said. "My ancestors moved to this area from Kentucky so I have a lot of history here."
Donations can be made at the park entrance or Como Smoke and Fire's GoFundMe.