Meridian Hill — an ancient Native American spiritual ground and the site of America’s first national park for the performing arts — has been dramatically reclaimed from crime and violence by its Washington, D.C. community. The Josephine Butler Parks Center, which sits atop Meridian Hill, is Washington’s “greenhouse” for celebrating and advancing once-forgotten green spaces all across the capital and beyond.
However, little about the Center’s landscape suggests the full extent of its sacredness and history of multiculturalism. Though thousands of Center visitors learn the award-winning green space revitalization principles of Washington Parks & People, they lack sufficient opportunities on site to see, feel and be part of this powerful reconnection with the land and all life.
Now, Parks & People has transformed its headquarters into a model Open Space Sacred Place that unites and inspires all people, while at the same time provide a visitor center and story-gathering place for Meridian Hill. This lasting healing and learning space demonstrates how the tremendous power of the land can help meet the most urgent needs of communities. The new site will have multiple gathering and learning places; peaceful healing and learning gardens; model natural storm water diversion, native habitat; public art; and a contemplative space.
Through this revitalization, the Center serves not only as an inspirational and sacred space for communities and visitors, but also as a resource center and living museum for parks, greening movement leaders and supporters from around the world.