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About Pocketparks

Pocketparks is a non-profit organization that reimagines and redevelops unused plots of land to provide communities with active and beautiful recreational areas. Through community engagement, each park is designed to meet the specific needs of the neighborhood in which it is located. Every park incorporates three things: activity, artwork, and opportunity. Pocketparks are small, but make a big impact. By focusing on small outdoor parks, we can quickly provide positive impact without extensive resources. Pocketparks not only offers beautiful recreational areas, but works to increase safety, boost community pride, and contribute to economic development. Pocketparks is a platform that reactivates outdoor areas to build up the ecosystem of communities and weave vibrant spaces into our urban fabric.


Established in St. Louis in 2021, Pocketparks is working to activate local communities and plans to grow into a network of parks that sprawl across the city and eventually expand to other cities and states. As a 501(c)(3), nonprofit organization, Pocketparks relies on donations to support its efforts.

Our Corporate Mailing Address is:

4816 Red Cedar Valley Ln Ste 512

High Ridge, MO 63049

Phone: (636) 556-0565


Click the button below to view our Media Features and Press Releases.


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& Reports

Click the button below to view our Annual Report and other Resources. 


“To me, this isn’t as much of a parks project as it is about activating the streets for a more vibrant, dense, urban fabric. Using a human-centric approach, we can elevate the urban experience to one that is safe, beautiful, active, and diverse. We are creating a platform using parks to reactivate the streets and build up the ecosystem of our city.”


- Samantha Lee Smugala, President & Founder 

Our Process

Our process starts with identifying opportunities and engaging the community.  All projects are community driven to assure we are creating positive change. We translate feedback into a relevant park design. After construction, we launch the new pocket park as a fully activated space, and continue to maintain the park for the foreseeable future.

Find Opportunities



Design & Construction

Launch & Activation

Continued Maintenance

Our Process

Our Sponsors

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The Board


Samantha  Lee Smugala

President & Founder

Samantha has a diverse background in marketing, design, and strategy. Her career has led her to work for both small and large firms, with projects ranging from logo design to go-to-market strategies. Samantha has worked across industries in education, healthcare, hospitality, entertainment, and manufacturing. 
Samantha’s mission with Pocketparks is to activate and beautify city streets by reimagining and redeveloping underutilized plots into beautiful recreational areas for the community.

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Sarah Arnoksy Ko

Vice President

Sarah Arnosky Ko is a vice president at Greater St. Louis, Inc., an economic development organization committed to driving economic growth and creating opportunities for all in the St. Louis region. In her role, Sarah leads implementation of key initiatives that promote, activate and enhance the built environment. In her spare time, Sarah can be found playing roller derby, working on house projects, and trying new St. Louis restaurants. 


Katie Holtgrave


Katie is financial analyst at Fleshman Hillard. Her focus is business valuations, data analysis, forensic support in fraud, and forensic engagements. As an involved community member, Katie also serves as the President of the St. Louis Startup Ambassadors and the Treasurer of Epworth Children and Family Services. Katie's personal interests have lead her to be an active community member and patron to local restaurants, sporting events, concerts, and more. While committed to bettering St. Louis, Katie also enjoys international travel and exploring new countries, cities, and cultures.


Amanda Auer


Amanda Auer is the Senior Vice President of Development at Green Street Real Estate Ventures. After 16 years of experience, Amanda has a deep technical and legal understanding of the real estate development process and plays a vital role on the most financially complex projects. Amanda is a licensed attorney and received a Corporate Counsel Award from the St. Louis Business Journal in 2018 and was featured in Vanguard Law Magazine in 2016. Amanda holds a Juris Doctorate from St. Louis University School of Law (2007) and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Missouri, Columbia (2003). Amanda is a member of the Urban Land Institute and serves as a board member and participates on the tax credit working group for the Missouri Growth Association. 

The Board
Advisory Board

The Advisory Board

Maxine Clark

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Advisory Board Member

Maxine Clark is the Founder of Build-A-Bear Workshop®, a teddy-bear themed retail-entertainment experience. In 2013, Maxine stepped down from her CEB (Chief Executive Bear) position to start her next act-- to help unleash the potential of women and minority entrepreneurs and to use her entrepreneurial skills to create platforms and places that give access to more St. Louis families. Her latest venture is the Delmar DivINe™—the transformation of a neighborhood eyesore, the historic St. Luke’s Hospital, into a multi-use real estate development opened in late 2021.


Maxine is a Founding Managing Director of Prosper Women’s Capital, the Board of Advisors of Lewis and Clark Ventures and an advisor to the TxO Fund. Maxine is a member of the Build-A-Bear Workshop Board of Directors and a recent past member of Footlocker, Inc. Board of Directors. Maxine is also an Emeritus member of the Washington University Board of Trustees and a board member of, Barnes Jewish Hospital, Goldfarb School of Nursing,  New America, and PBS national Nine PBS boards. In 2017 Maxine was named to the Missouri Public Affairs Hall of Fame and in 2015 was named Women of the Year by the Greater Missouri Leadership Foundation. 

The Team

The Team


Adam Walker

Construction Manager


Paul Parham

Product Manager


Morgan Groth

Design / Social Media


Lexii Gregory

Community Engagement / Events


Aaron Church

Design / Park Lead


Sara Feagans

Newsletters / Events

Adam Demien

Design Team

Marrisa A. Shelton

Design Team

Design Team

Robert May

Donor Roll

Samantha Sachtleben

Coordination /Events

Donor Roll

Abdul Samad Alvi

Alex Kauffman

Allison Mcgrath

Alternative Life Guide LLC

Amelia Mccown

Angela Durb

Beth Blackmon

Brian Matthews

Carl Mitchel

Catherine Boyd

Chris Donnell

Christopher Campbell

Christy & Ed Schlafly

Cindy Mense

Colleen Autry

Darlene Davison

Dave & Cathy Brown

Deborah Cannon

Deborah Dolgin

Deborah Stoller

Diane Trowbridge

Doug Eller

Elizabeth Brown Foundation

Eric Odonnell

Fatimah Muhammad

Faye Hender

Florae Beauty

George McCrory

James Page

Jenna Endres


Jim Shelvy

William A. Kerr Foundation

Joshua Dull

Joy Adkins

 Juwanna Brown

Karen Smugala

Kathleen Greminger

Kathy Van Voorhees

Katie Holtgrave

Lacy Cagle

Larry Cohn

Lesli Thellman

Lisa Reed

Margaret McDonald

Mary Stewart

Maryville University

Maxine Clark

Meridith Perkins

Mike Roberts

Mike Woods

Myrna Guerrero

Nancy Ridenour

Neal Richardson

Nicole Hawkins

Nicole Johnson

NIcole Lee Haukap

Paul Parham

Pete Wagner

Philip Layfield

Polk Gail

Rachel Roman

Rachel Speed

Rebecca Lester

Regina Dennis

Ruth Siteman

Ryan Munge

Sally & Tom Cohn

Samantha Lee Smugala

Sara & Eric Gilbert

Sarah Arnosky Ko

Sarah Marino

Shirley Wolverson

Terese Messman

Tim Elwell

Tom Smugala


Tyler Mackie

Vcitory Thomas

Virgina Michalik

William Lakin

Zach Foppe

StoneTree Fabrications

BFM Contractors

Crawford Taylor Foundation

The Ellenwood Fund

Jennifer Stilwell

Jenny Birge

Jessica Rowe

Jim Ladd

Jennifer Mulholland

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