City of Missoula hosts informal talk at Boyd Park with Mayor Hess

City Chats in the Park is a new community engagement initiative from the City of Missoula.
City Chats in the Park sign
Posted at 3:58 PM, May 24, 2023
and last updated 2023-05-24 18:00:43-04

MISSOULA - Dozens of Missoula citizens gathered in Boyd Park to ask questions and express concerns with Mayor Jordan Hess and other public officials in an informal setting on Tuesday, May 23, 2023.

City Chats in the Park is a new community engagement initiative from the City of Missoula that encourages its citizens to interact with their public officials in a less traditional setting.

“We can just connect with neighbors and hear from them about things that they’re concerned about, we do have some specific projects that we have information about, but we really came open to hearing whatever folks were interested in talking about, "Ashley Brittner Wells said when asked about the purpose of this event.

A variety of topics ranging from city issues to neighborhood problems were discussed with Mayor Hess. The community members we talked with say they were pleased with the time they spent with him.

“Yeah, it was really nice to meet him in a setting like this instead of inside of an office or something, much more casual and easy to talk to him," Missoula resident Lawrence Wilson said about having an up close and personal experience with Mayor Hess.

Lawrence Wilson, at City Chats in the Park
Lawrence Wilson, at City Chats in the Park

Speaking with the mayor in this informal setting allowed Lawrence to address specific problems in his neighborhood, Wilson expressed.

“We did have an issue with the cul de sac most of the people that live on the cul de sac are worried about an apartment being built and the amount of traffic and the amount of safety issues whether it’s police or fire department and so he heard what we had to say he’s gonna bring it to the city council, they’ll be discussing and talking about it.”

Overall, the first of three City Chats in the Park was successful and it left Wilson wanting to come back for more.

“I would like to see more events like this, where citizens can come and discuss issues that are on their mind. So that the average person gets more involved with the city government.”

There are two more planned City Chats in the parks, one on June 22 at Franklin Park and another on July 26 at Bonner Park. Visit for more information about City Chats in The Park.