Wellington has been designated as a 2015 Playful City USA. This award acknowledges the community’s “playability,” which is the extent to which a city makes it easy for all kids to get balanced and active play.
KaBOOM!, a national nonprofit, honored cities, towns and counties across the country for making their communities more playable. The City of Fort Collins and City of Boulder were also designated this year.
Wellington is using playability as a complementary component to walkability and bikeability to build a community that serves a family oriented population. The town plans to improve on existing infrastructure as well as add new parks, bikeways and trails that promote connectivity and playful opportunities for all ages, abilities and socio-economic backgrounds.
The Town of Wellington and the Parks Advisory Board applied for the Playful City USA designation earlier this year. The town’s goal is to continue to develop town programs and features in conjunction with local schools, businesses and agencies that build a cohesive community revolving around a playful and healthy outdoor living lifestyle.
“To me, playability means finding opportunities to play anywhere, not just parks and playgrounds,” said Wellington Mayor Jack Brinkhoff.
Hopscotch sidewalks, structured recess programs, mandated neighborhood play spaces, city-wide play days and mobile recreation vehicles are all ways in which communities across the country are appealing to residents, as well as attracting and retaining residents.
“Playability is crucial to the success of our future communities, and we are proud of the work these cities and leaders are doing to provide a better quality of life for all residents, and especially families,” said James Siegal, KaBOOM! president. “Play provides a competitive advantage for cities looking to attract and retain residents. With these esteemed leaders, and our friends and partners across the country, we continue to prioritize play for all kids.”
To learn more about these cities, see the full list of the 241 communities named 2015 Playful City USA honorees, or to gather more information about the Playful City USA program, visit www.playfulcityusa.org. The group also encourages you to take part in the conversation on #playability with thought leaders via Twitter and Facebook.