Originally named Northgate Park, the park was renamed in 2003 to honor John Paff, a former mayor of Independence and a community leader for over 50 years. The park is located in the Northgate subdivision on the corner of Hoffman and Gun Club Road, although it is accessed via Wild Rose Court. Amenities include a playground, basketball court, and picnic shelter with tables.
For those of you who don’t remember Troop 27, it was headed by John Pfaff decades ago and is now disbanded. John instilled a spirit of community service and leadership in his young scouts which has lasted to this day. In the years following John’s tenure as scoutmaster, his scouts grew up had children (and grandchildren) and went their separate ways. But they never forgot the example John set.
John Pfaff Park History
In 2006, Al Oppliger and some of the other former scouts decided to raise funds to make an improvement to John Pfaff Park and demonstrate the profound effect John had on their lives. The scouts raised almost $2,000 for the purchase of a drinking fountain and the City was happy to install it in the park near the basketball court. John Pfaff with Tom Pfaff and City Manager Greg Ellis.
The ribbon cutting on July 2nd was a special event. John was there with much of his family, as were six of his former scouts (one of whom is now an assistant scoutmaster) as well as members of the current Boy Scout Troop 38. This project was a wonderful example of the lasting impact a good role model and organization can have on youth. It also showed how members of the community can work with the city to improve our parks.
On April 26th and 27th, 2008, area volunteers installed playground equipment from GameTime, Inc. at Pfaff Park. It was a grass-roots fundraising effort led by Al Oppliger and Billy Kay Herrell, who raised over $10,000 locally. The city was able to match that with city money and secure an additional $10,000 to install irrigation, making John Pfaff Park a welcoming attraction for community members.