"Take Back the Park" event works to elimate violence in Lexington's downtown

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - On Saturday, Lexington’s Duncan Park was filled with sounds of laughter and conversation as opposed to sirens and gunshots that typically plague the park.

"We live in the neighborhood and it’s good to come out and get to know your neighbors and be part of the community," said Daniel Dickinson, who moved to the area with his family about a year ago.

This community is one that’s certainly unified in their attempt to take back Duncan Park by eliminating the violence that plagues the area.

"It's important to express to the kids that it’s still our neighborhood and that you can come out here and have a good time without any violence or drama," said Courtland Smith, who lives nearby.

Some folks said Saturday was the first time they'd ever visited Duncan Park even though they live right down the road.

"Not enough people come to this park. There are a lot of people and kids out here and you barely see these kids out here at the park so it really just makes it more of a safe space," Dickinson explained.

Many said the event helped show the surrounding community how much potential the park has and how important it is to have a safe, family-friendly place in the area.

"It lets people know that this is available and that this isn't a community of violence but a community of peace-loving people who want to take care of their families," Smith told us Saturday afternoon.

Following the event, folks participated in a candlelight vigil in honor of those who have ever experienced fear or violence at the park.

The Nest, a non-profit organization for women and children, helped organize the "Take Back the Park" event.

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