ahrens park foundation logo

In 1997, the Ahrens Park Foundation was established as a private operating foundation, which owns and operates Ahrens/Paschall Memorial Park. The Ahrens Park Foundation is dedicated to providing first class recreational and athletic facilities while collaborating with wellness, educational and recreational programs and organizations for the greater good of the community of Grinnell. Its partners include the Claude W. and Dolly Ahrens Foundation, Greater Poweshiek Community Foundation, Grinnell Community Early Learning Center, City of Grinnell’s Parks & Recreation, Grinnell Youth Baseball/Softball Association, Imagine Grinnell, Grinnell-Newburg Schools, Grinnell Chamber of Commerce, LINK, and Mid-Iowa Futbol Club.

Ahrens/Paschall Memorial Park

Ahrens park foundation statue

Ahrens/Paschall Memorial Park is named after Claude and Dolly’s son, the late Paul W. Ahrens, who passed away in 1989 at the age of fifty, and a friend of Paul’s, Jim Paschall, who also passed away at a fairly young age. Building a recreational park had always been a life long dream for both Claude and his son, Paul.

The Ahrens/Paschall Memorial Park, opened in 1994, is home to eight youth softball and baseball fields, outdoor basketball courts, a tennis court, four pickleball courts, a sand volleyball court, three youth soccer fields, a golf driving range, several playground areas, three shelter houses, a sledding hill, community gardens, green spaces, and a one and a half mile outdoor walking path. Also located at the park is the Ahrens Family Center, the Grinnell Athletic and Recreation Center, and the offices for the Claude W. and Dolly Ahrens Foundation, Ahrens Park Foundation, Greater Poweshiek Community Foundation, Imagine Grinnell, and LINK.

The Grinnell Heritage Center is a future new project, organization and collaborative partner of the Ahrens Park Foundation. Plans for an educational and environmental center on a 40 acre campus is coming soon and will be located adjacent to the Ahrens Park soccer fields and NW walking path. More information about this exciting new project will be posted soon. Please visit www.grinnellheritagefarm.com to learn more about the Grinnell Heritage Farm!

To reserve one of our three park shelter houses, please contact the Ahrens Park Foundation offices at (641)236-5518. Please view our calendar section to see current availability of our park shelters and other park events.

View or download a copy of the Ahrens Park Map

View or download a copy of the Ahrens Park Facility Usage and Partner Chart

View or download a copy of the Ahrens Park Emergency Response Weather Plan

Ahrens Park Foundation Board of Directors

President – Jon Pettlon
Vice-President – Steve Sieck
Treasurer/Secretary – Shannon Fitzgerald
Assistant Treasurer – Julie Gosselink
Jarrod Phelps
Susan Witt

Management Consultant

Chad Nath

Facilities Manager

Shane Gosselink


For more information on the Mid-Iowa Futbol Club (soccer) please visit their website at www.midiowafc.com.

The Grinnell Sports Authority provides grants to non-profit groups holding sporting events in Grinnell and Poweshiek County. Please see the Grinnell Sports Authority website for more information.

Grinnell Athletic and Recreation Center (GARC)

Garc logo

The Grinnell Athletic & Recreation Center (GARC) was built in 1998 and includes a multi-purpose gymnasium, locker rooms, two offices, and an open lobby. The city of Grinnell’s Parks & Recreation leases the GARC facility year round for its offices and various indoor programs and activities.

The cost of attending open gym hours is $3.00 for children and adults. There is no charge for senior citizens. To purchase an open gym pass, you must go to the city of Grinnell’s Recreation department office, located in the GARC. Monthly and yearly passes are available. Passes are valid during all open gym hours.

Please download the GARC Flyer for more information on GARC and its facility usage.

For more information regarding the City of Grinnell’s Parks & Recreation department, please visit their website at www.grinnelliowa.gov/159/Parks-Recreation

Open Gym Hours GARC

October – April

Monday thru Friday:
7:30 AM – 8:30 PM

11:30 AM – 5:30 PM

1:00 PM – 5:30 PM

Ahrens Family Center

ahrens family center photos

The Ahrens Family Center was built in 1994 which houses classrooms and play areas for the Grinnell Community Early Learning Center. With a recent addition, the Ahrens Family Center now has twelve learning classrooms, a gymnasium, a 20 by 35 foot swimming pool where small children are taught to swim, offices and a large kitchen facility. Outside, there are two fenced-in play areas with playground equipment and safe tile surfacing for children who attend the center to play.

For rentals of the Ahrens Family Center or Grinnell Athletic and Recreation Center, please contact the city of Grinnell/Recreation department at (641)236-2620.

For more information regarding the Grinnell Community Early Learning Center, please visit their website at www.grinnellcommunitydaycare.com

Administrative Foundation Offices

claude dolly roomThomas K. Marshall Roompatiofoundation office photosNew Reception AreaReception Areacommunity room 2

The 5,400 square foot administrative foundation offices for the Ahrens Park Foundation and Claude W. and Dolly Ahrens Foundation is comprised of a welcoming lobby, reception desk, nine office rooms, guest workstation, three conference rooms, two kitchens and several restrooms. The foundation offices facility was originally built in 2006 with the completion of a large building expansion in 2011. Offices for the Greater Poweshiek Community Foundation, Imagine Grinnell, and LINK are also housed here along with Grinnell College work study students.

All administrative and grantmaking functions occur at the foundation offices. Various charitable programs run by the Claude W. and Dolly Ahrens Foundation include the Community Support Services, Dolly Ahrens Scholarship Award, Leave It Better Than You Found It, and Lend A Hand.

The Ahrens Park administrative facility is available by reservation for individuals and/or groups associated with local nonprofit organizations who have an established relationship with either the Ahrens Park Foundation or the Claude W. and Dolly Ahrens Foundation for the use of meeting and/or reception space. Use is not permitted for private parties, or other social, non-community oriented gatherings unless approved by office staff of the Claude W. and Dolly Ahrens Foundation.