A project years in the planning is about to become a reality. The Adventure Playground at Logan’s Whittier Community Center, 290 North 400 East, is scheduled to be built September 14-19. The Center’s Executive Director, Kendall Andelin, said he needs to fill 2400 volunteer shifts. “We have so many hundreds of volunteers signed up,” he said, “it’s almost getting hard to keep track of them. But we need more, many more.” Andelin said among volunteers needed there is a place for professional tradesmen, but he said there are jobs for everyone: men, women, youth, skilled, unskilled. “We’re also looking for a handful of people to be construction captains,” he said. “They need to be available for the whole week. It takes a special person to step up and fill that role. We need about a dozen of them to complete the project.” This is a large project. Andelin says the footprint of the playground is about 16,000 square feet. “Over the years we’ve focused our design on a playground that children with disabilities would participate fully on, along with children who do not have disabilities. It’s turned into a playground with rubber surfacing. For wheelchair access it has ramps all the way up the entire structure past the truck, onto the pirate ship, up to the tree house, across the suspension bridge and all the way up to the top of the castle.” He says there are a lot of other elements that factor into a playground as well, including accessible handrails, cooperative games, musical instruments and transfer points so that a person can get from a wheelchair onto a piece of equipment easily. “We called in the professionals,” said Andelin, “a design firm from Ithaca, NY. It’s a unique process. Each playground is specifically designed to the community it is built in. “We went out to a whole bunch of elementary classrooms in the valley and asked kids what they would like to see in their playground. They really got involved, it was a fun experience. The theme of our playground came from those ideas.” Andelin said the playground is for everyone. “It’s not only for children, but we hope their parents and grandparents will come and play with them. Anyone may come and enjoy the playground.” He said most of the materials are on the way to the playground site right now, truckload after truckload. Andelin said an important element of the tree house is the artwork needed to make it look like a tree house. “We’ll need some help with that, in fact we’ll need some teams for that project and we’re looking for an art captain, some one who can be there the whole week.” He says it’s easy to become a volunteer. “All of the volunteer records are online at whittiercenter.org,” he said. “You click on the volunteer link and fill out the form with the shift you can work.” The playground is scheduled to be built in one week, from September 14-19.
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