New “Dream Playground” in Long Beach
February 21, 2011 § Leave a comment
Last Saturday, Studio One Eleven volunteers had the privilege of helping to create a new playground in the Wrigley area of Long Beach. The event was organized by KaBOOM!, a national non-profit whose goal is to “save play” by creating playgrounds within walking distance of every child in America. Over 400 volunteers from Foresters, the City of Long Beach, the Wrigley Area Neighborhood Alliance (WANA), and the community at large joined together to transform what was an under-utilized infill park along the LA River into a 3,000 square-foot playground that was conceived, designed, and decorated by the children that will use it.
In a yearlong process, the children helped choose the equipment for the playground, which includes swings, a jungle gym, and a see-saw, as well as the surprising inclusion of bat houses to reduce the mosquito population. They also created mosaic tiles and 60 square-inch art pieces to be displayed around the playground, giving them a sense of ownership and pride in what they’ve helped to build. Volunteers were split into several teams, with one team dubbed the “green initiative” and devoted solely to ensuring sustainability within the area by recycling and planting drought-tolerant plants.
Volunteers big and small create mosaic stepping stones.
This is the first playground that KaBOOM! has built in 2011, with two more scheduled to be built in Long Beach in the coming months. According to the kids, the hardest part of building this playground was waiting the 72 hours before they could play on it!
For more information on KaBOOM!, visit kaboom.org.