Ann Arbor's city parks sit on the ancestral and traditional homelands of several indigenous Native peoples. Read a
land acknowledgement from the city and learn more about the early history of the land
The land for the park was acquired in 1961 from the developer of the surrounding subdivision. The park used to be known as Vernon Downs Playlot, after the name of the subdivision. In 1975, Girl Scout Troop #190 petitioned the city to rename the park to Mushroom Park. They were inspired by the concrete climbing structures in the park that were shaped like mushrooms, which were built in 1962. They argued that "Vernon Downs" was not a commonly used name and that children had already been calling it Mushroom Park. George Owers, the park system superintendent, recommended to Ann Arbor City Council that the name be changed. Council voted unanimously to approve changing the name to Mushroom Park. The mushrooms still stand in the park to this day, having been colorfully painted by neighborhood residents.