Centerville adds new all-inclusive playground with multiple community donations

Centerville-Washington Park District recently added an all-inclusive playground at one of its most popular parks. Yankee Park, 7500 Yankee St., dedicated the new playground Friday, May 13, 2022. CONTRIBUTED

Combined ShapeCaption
Centerville-Washington Park District recently added an all-inclusive playground at one of its most popular parks. Yankee Park, 7500 Yankee St., dedicated the new playground Friday, May 13, 2022. CONTRIBUTED

The Centerville-Washington Park District recently added an all-inclusive playground at one of its most popular parks.

Yankee Park, 7500 Yankee St., dedicated the new playground May 13.

“A well-designed, inclusive playground welcomes children and adults of all abilities to play and interact together, so that’s what we were shooting for,” CWPD Executive Director Kristen Marks told this news outlet.

Last year, the park district presented three potential playground design concepts to the community, said Marks, who has been with CWPD since 2002 and led the district since March 2021. More than 600 people responded to help select a design.

“Inclusive play is all about options, so that’s what we try to create whenever we have the opportunity to upgrade or replace a community park playground,” she said. “So when we asked for input, the design that’s there now is the one that won, but there were also a few questions about shade availability and inclusive options, so that’s where the Centerville Noon Optimist Club came in.”

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Combined ShapeCaption
Centerville-Washington Park District recently added an all-inclusive playground at one of its most popular parks. Yankee Park, 7500 Yankee St., dedicated the new playground Friday, May 13, 2022. CONTRIBUTED

Centerville-Washington Park District recently added an all-inclusive playground at one of its most popular parks. Yankee Park, 7500 Yankee St., dedicated the new playground Friday, May 13, 2022. CONTRIBUTED

Combined ShapeCaption
Centerville-Washington Park District recently added an all-inclusive playground at one of its most popular parks. Yankee Park, 7500 Yankee St., dedicated the new playground Friday, May 13, 2022. CONTRIBUTED

Total cost for the park is $300,000, the majority of which comes from the district’s capital improvements budget, Marks said.

The club’s $25,000 donation helped the Park District buy inclusive play equipment and shade structures. They include musical chimes, an ADA-compliant spinner with seatbacks, a turf mound and a Cozy Dome, which is an igloo-like hiding spot.

The new playground also features a safety surface. It is designed to be easy to walk on, accommodate wheels, and be ready for use after even heavy rain.

Also donating to the Yankee Park effort was the Centerville High School National Honor Society ($3,000).

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“Donations such as these are really vital to the park district for enhancing projects and doing all we can for the community,” Marks said. “While it’s a supplement to something we would have done, it’s so much better because of it.”

CNO donated another $20,000 on Monday to help make the community’s playgrounds more accessible. That donation will cover the cost of 23 inclusive swings throughout the district. Each of CWPD’s playgrounds with existing swing sets will soon include one of the swings.

The park district plans to install two types of swings, some designed for children ages 2 to 5 years old and some designed for ages 5 years old and older.

Combined ShapeCaption
Centerville-Washington Park District recently added an all-inclusive playground at one of its most popular parks. Yankee Park, 7500 Yankee St., dedicated the new playground Friday, May 13, 2022. CONTRIBUTED

Centerville-Washington Park District recently added an all-inclusive playground at one of its most popular parks. Yankee Park, 7500 Yankee St., dedicated the new playground Friday, May 13, 2022. CONTRIBUTED

Combined ShapeCaption
Centerville-Washington Park District recently added an all-inclusive playground at one of its most popular parks. Yankee Park, 7500 Yankee St., dedicated the new playground Friday, May 13, 2022. CONTRIBUTED

The accessible swings will provide children who are unable to use traditional swings with an opportunity to enjoy the many sensory benefits of swinging, Marks said. Installation will begin in late summer.

“The long-range planning committee of the Centerville Noon Optimists were looking for a high-impact donation opportunity,” club President Gary Hansen said in a statement. “After seeing the impact of the accessibility options at Yankee Park, we were excited to add accessibility options to playgrounds throughout the district.”

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