The largest project undertaken in the first ten years of the Rotary Club of Morialta was the upgrading of the Morialta Picnic Ground.

In May 1989, eight members and three Rangers of the National Parks and Wildlife Service walked the Picnic Ground and discussed ideas for its improvement. They agreed to form a joint working party to design and promote the project, and the first formal meeting was held on 15 July 1989. This meeting endorsed the broad aims and elements of the upgrade with the stated objective. “To plan, design and coordinate a project to maximize the development of the Morialta Picnic Ground over a nominal five year period”.
This Working Party was still meeting regularly in 1994.

Students in the Park Design course at the Salisbury College of Advanced Education and their course leader were recruited to assess the design considerations and present suggested designs. The designs finally chosen was largely a composite of the excellent presentations by those students.
The Draft Project Plan was further refined in 1990 and 1991 as a result of discussions with the Morialta Residents’ Association, The Friends of Morialta and Black Hill Park, other community groups, and state government and local government authorities. At an early stage the Rotary Club of Morialta pledged $5000 per year for five years, plus physical inputs, if the National Parks and Wildlife Service would commit similar resources.

Meanwhile, working bees were underway on revegetation, removing non-indigenous plants, dismantling condemned structures and providing the first of three double barbecue units.
By early 1992 the Project Plan was well developed and it was formally presented to Minister for Environment and Planning for endorsement. The Shadow Minister of the day was also given a copy and kept informed. Apart from one amendment sheet relating to details, the Project Plan was still current in mid 1994 and guiding the ongoing work.
There are now three double barbecue units and on busy days all are in use. Tables and benches have been installed and a carefully designed playground for small children blends into the leafy background. The carpark has been rearranged for safer and less obtrusive parking. A three panel Information Bay erected near the carpark describes the nature and origin of the park and acknowledges the groups who have worked on this project. Several thousand new trees and shrubs are now thriving. In 1994 the existing condemned toilet block will be replaced.

The Rotary Trail
The main walking trail along the length of the creek has been improved to wheelchair standard and has been officially named “The Rotary Trail”. Together with a section of the Morialta Road and the walking trail to the First Falls this makes a very substantial facility for the enjoyment and recreation of disabled persons and at the time was the only facility of this nature in South Australia. Other features designed for disabled persons are the paved paths, special tables and lower barbecue plates.
The Morialta Picnic Ground working Party acknowledges the contributions of many members of the Rotary Club and the excellent cooperation of the Department and the Rangers, especially Ranger Russell Bath who was a member of the Working Party and strongly supported the project from its inception until his retirement in March 1994. Many community groups and individuals have given valuable assistance and the sharing of the work so widely has been a feature of the undertaking. Their work and fellowship and greatly appreciated.
At the Opening Ceremony in October 1993, State and Local Government members and officers applauded the Rotary Club of Morialta for this initiative. It has been an excellent opportunity to focus the efforts of the members, advance environmental values, and raise the profile of the club in our community.