Search
Pin It
Favorite

Fun for All 

click to enlarge kidsbeat1-1-177659055cd0a0c4.jpg

In 2010, Julia Wayne was working as an early childhood special educator for the Burlington School District when she realized there was no local playground accessible to all of her students, who had a variety of diverse needs — including autism, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome and visual impairment. So she set out to get one built. Oakledge for All, a volunteer group Wayne began, is embarking on a campaign to raise $500,000 by 2019 to support the construction of a playground in Burlington's Oakledge Park. The new playground will replace the existing one, which was built in 1988. The space will have "different areas that meet different kids' needs," said former school counselor Jane Krasnow, a member of the steering committee. Features will include a PebbleFlex synthetic rubber ground surface instead of mulch, swings that accommodate different abilities and ages, an in-ground trampoline, as well as other inclusive elements like an extra-wide family slide, quiet green spaces, and wheelchair-accessible pathways between play equipment, parking and bathrooms. Burlington's Parks, Recreation & Waterfront department, a key partner in the initiative, selected Oakledge after conducting a site analysis of the city's parks and playgrounds. Burlington Parks & Rec has committed $150,000 to the project and is pursuing additional state and federal grants. A $30,000 "Meet Me at the Park" grant from the Walt Disney Company will help purchase the first piece of permanent playground equipment — a swing — in October. Watch for a kickoff celebration with music, food and activities at the park next month.

To learn more or to volunteer to help with the playground initiative, visit oakledgeforall.org.

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Keep commenting classy! Read our guidelines....

Readers also liked…

More by Alison Novak

camps central

Wildflowers Studio

Wildflowers Studio

Essex, VT

Wildflowers Studio will be offering Summer Camp every week this year starting June 18th until the week of August 20th!! Each week offers a different theme from building to superheroes to yoga to theater! Our location at Lang Farm offers a beautiful setting for plenty of play, exploration and creativity…(more)

other camps » learn more »

The Kids Beat

Top Viewed Stories