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Swatek Park

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Michal Anton Svatek came to Nebraska from the Kingdom of Bohemia as a teenager, but it was Mike Swatek who set out to make a new life for himself at the age of 22 in Oklahoma City during the Land Run of 1889. Swatek was a building contractor in those early days and constructed some of the most notable buildings of the time, including the Overholser Opera House. With the advent of the automobile around 1910, he switched his business to road paving and his company paved many city streets and state highways for several decades. His company further diversified into housing and they developed this neighborhood in 1931. Swatek also served as a city councilman and an officer at the county level.

This park was included in Swatek’s Cashion Place neighborhood which is now known as Shepherd Historic District. The name Shepherd was used because all the land that includes this park, the neighborhood and the nearby mall was once the Land Run homestead of the Shepherd family. Mike and Lottie Swatek formally donated the land to the city for use as a park in 1931 and it still bears their name.