Pistons Heighbors Program presents: Let's Play! A learning series to help nonprofits and neighborhood organizations provide spaces and activities for Detroiters to stay active during every season!

The Detroit Pistons Foundation in partnership with the Detroit Parks Coalition, Project Play, and The Work Department, and sponsored by the William Davidson Foundation and Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation created the "Let's Play!" learning series in the Fall of 2021.

The first training series consisted of five virtual learning sessions and one in-person session that provided tips, resources, and best practices for nonprofits and grassroots organizations to produce engaging community-driven programming in public spaces. Covered topics included: designing activities, community engagement, fundraising, grant writing, acquiring permits, safety protocols and much more.

Participants also had the opportunity to apply for mini grants offered by the Detroit Pistons Foundation to fund their own public space activation programs. Details on the grant recipients are below.


(Virtual sessions will be recorded and posted here)

Session I - Develop Your Public Space Program: How to Design Activities

Speaker: Rochelle Lento, President, People for Palmer Park


Session II - Develop Your Public Space Program: How to Work with Volunteers and Staff & How to Get the Word Out

Speakers: Yvette Bass-Pullom--Program Director, Chandler Park Conservancy and Ayo Thomas--Engagement Associate, Belle Isle Conservancy


Session III - Ensure a Safe and Secure Space

Speaker: Anthony Benavides -- Director, Clark Park Coalition


Session IV - Permitting and the City of Detroit Parks and Recreation Department


Speaker: Tracey Jackson-- Manager of Operations, City of Detroit Parks and Recreation Department


Session V - Get your Project Funded

Speaker: JJ Velez, Director Public Spaces, Rocket Community Fund and Matthew Schmitt, Program Manager, Michigan Community Resources


In-Person Event - How to Write a Grant: Get One-on-One Training and Advice

Pistons Performance Center, 6201 Second Avenue, Detroit, MI 48202

Sign Up

Apply for a Grant*

Grant applications have closed

Program Resources

Download pdf


Sponsored by: Detroit Pistons Foundation, William Davidson Foundation, Ralph C. Wilson, Jr Foundation
In Partnership With: Project Play Southeast Michigan, City of Detroit, Detroit Parks Coalition, The Work Department