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“It was like Christmas morning,” said Ashley Macdonald, Wellington town trustee, as she described the feelings of volunteers who showed up as early as 7:45 a.m. to be part of Community Build at Wellington Community Park on Saturday morning, April 11. From two huge semi trucks, volunteers unloaded, unpacked and began to assemble playground equipment for the “tot lot” part of the new playground that will cater to children age five and under.
On the first of three days designated for the Community Build, 37 volunteers showed up including a crew from Harvest Farm, four members of the Wellington Fire Department and five town trustees. “I’m excited to be here,” said Mayor Jack Brinkhoff. “I’m surprised at the number of volunteers who showed up.” Two volunteers from general contractor ECI also joined in the work.
The day was balmy and work went smoothly according to Macdonald. “One of the reasons we selected Childrens Play Structures to provide the equipment was their offer to allow community volunteers to do much of the physical labor involved in installation of the playground equipment. We’re saving $20,000,” she said.
Another 31 volunteers showed up early on the following day, a blustery Sunday, to continue the unpacking and assembly work. Three representatives of Childrens Play Structures were also on the scene to direct operations. Volunteers went about their business, seemingly oblivious to the wind. Volunteers were sustained by pizza from Domino’s, bottled water from Bella’s Market and cookie from the Country Rose.
The area of the playground set aside for children five through 12 will be installed in a final Community Build day set for this phase on April 18. This equipment is suitable for children of all ages, abilities and disabilities and is even sturdy enough to allow parents to join their kids in using it. The projected opening date for the playground is early fall. For safety reasons, parents are advised to keep their children off the equipment until after the official grand opening.
As work on the park progresses, there will be additional opportunities to volunteer. Judging from the initial turnout from the community, progress on the park is in good hands. All those who contribute to bringing the park to life are likely to feel a special attachment to the place they helped to build.