Volunteers build playground
CLINTON TWP. — Shortly after the sun came up on Saturday, volunteers started to make the dreams of area children come true.
Under sunny skies and with a large supply of cold drinks, more than 100 people helped build a new playground and transform the Clinton Township and Factoryville Borough Joint Municipal Park.
“It’s just awesome,” said Sadie Rozenburg, a part-time grant writer for the borough, who had the idea for the playground in 2012. Rozenburg helped organize volunteer efforts on Saturday, as community members assembled what children from Lackawanna Trail Elementary Center helped design.
With a $20,000 grant from KaBOOM!, a nonprofit dedicated to creating play spaces nationwide, and a $227,000 Greenways, Trails and Recreation grant that will help finance the future addition of concession stands and bathrooms, plans for the park began to become a reality.
Many of the children’s ideas included treehouses, so organizers thought a three-story tower would be a perfect addition. With the tower erected and the concrete poured in advance of Saturday, volunteers installed slides, stairs and other equipment that children said they cannot wait to use.
On Saturday afternoon, Nick Swift, 10, planned to create steppingstones with other children. The stones will be used as a border along the outside of the playground. Once the mulch was placed, he and his friends planned to jump on it to help compact it. Nick said he plans to visit the playground every day this summer. “I think it’s going to be awesome when it’s done,” he said.
With more volunteers than necessary to assemble the playground, some people weeded and spread mulch throughout the park. More volunteers were scheduled to arrive throughout the day, including teams that would assemble benches. Volunteers enjoyed donated food that covered picnic tables and lemonade supplied by the Girl Scouts.
A ribbon cutting is scheduled for 10 a.m. Thursday, and with school ending for the summer that day, Mrs. Rozenburg expects the playground to be busy by afternoon.
Erin Jones, a member of the playground task force, passed out bottles of cold water to thirsty volunteers on Saturday.
“It’s amazing, just the community being together,” she said.