Friends of Forest Hills Playground

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the role of Friends of Forest Hills Playground?

We are a 501(c)3 nonprofit that advocates for the neighborhood playground and park. We help bring maintenance issues to the attention of local agencies. We also organize community events like playground cleanups, the annual Halloween party, and summer “picnic in the park” concerts.

We are 100% volunteer- and community-driven. We welcome volunteers (including board members) and donations!

I don't have a lot of free time. What does volunteering entail?

As much or as little as you wish. Friends of Forest Hills Playground is most active while planning the spring cleanup, summer concerts and Halloween Spooktacular. We usually meet in-person twice per year, and that's followed by communication via email to divvy up preparation tasks among board members and volunteers. There are also quick and easy volunteer tasks on the day of each event.

In short, an hour or two per year would be a big help; an hour per month... and we could do even more. Yoga in the Park or Movie Night, anyone?

Do you have particular areas of interest (such as park maintenance, Halloween, summer concerts) or have professional or amateur talents (such as event planning, editing, graphic design, public relations, grassroots organizing, fundraising, landscaping/gardening) that would lend themselves well to improving our all-ages park and strengthening the community? Fill out our volunteer interest form or email foresthillsplayground@gmail.com.

I'd like to host my child's birthday party at the park. Do I need a permit?

According to the DC Department of Parks and Recreation, a "permit is required for any organized activity, program or event on DPR property involving more than ten (10) people." Apply at dpr.dc.gov/permits. A DPR permit will not reserve any part of the grounds, however. They're always first come, first served.

Where should I report broken lights/playground equipment/overflowing trash cans?

By all means, let us know, especially if the situation you are reporting poses an immediate danger to park users. But we ask that you also call 311 or visit 311.dc.gov to report any issues you see.

What's with all those broken toys?

For decades, it's been a tradition in the Forest Hills community to leave outgrown toys at the playground. Unfortunately, the trucks, ride-on toys and other fun stuff are not durable enough to handle this much love, and often break within a matter of days. For the safety of all who enjoy the park, we ask that you NOT leave your unwanted toys, and if you see one that is broken, please throw it in a trash recepticle (if it will fit) or take it home to place with your own trash.

Why doesn't the drinking fountain work?

A drinking fountain was added to the playground during the 2014 playground renovation. Shortly after that, we discovered that playground users were pouring sand down the drain, clogging it. Other users were using it to wash sand from children's hand and feet, which also clogs the drain. And, sand gets into the mechanism for starting the fountain, and it gets stuck in the "on" position, wasting gallons of water. We are entertaining ideas for fixes. In the meantime, there is another drinking fountain by the tennis courts. Outside of winter months, it should be operational. If it is not, please contact 311 to report it.

Are dogs allowed on the baseball field and inside the playground?

DPR says: "To ensure the use and enjoyment of our property by all members of the public, dogs are not allowed on playing fields, in children’s play areas, on courts, in or around pools and in recreation centers. Working service dogs are exempt from this rule."

Forest Hills Park is at 32nd and Chesapeake Streets NW in Washington, DC.

Friends of Forest Hills Playground collects donations to pay for park events (concerts, Halloween party) and improvements. Send checks to:

Friends of Forest Hills Playground Inc.
PO Box 42329
Washington, DC 20015