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Specialized equipment at the playground will include swings, slides, benches and a large play-scape with ramps.
Courtesy illustration
Specialized equipment at the playground will include swings, slides, benches and a large play-scape with ramps.

Group still $40,000 shy for Delano playground

By Evan Belanger
evanb@decaturdaily.com · 340-2442

During the past two years, the Junior League of Morgan County has raised more than $60,000 for a handicapped-accessible playground to be built at Decatur’s Delano Park.

But the group and its fund-raising partner, Friends of Delano Park, still need at least $40,000 before the playground can be built.

“We hope to get this paid for in the next two years, but we need to make efforts to do it this year if possible,” said Carey Sutton, Junior League president-elect.

Sutton was present Monday as the Decatur City Council formally accepted a $200,000 state grant for the all-access playground.

The grant is to cover about half of the $400,000 or more needed to purchase and install the equipment. The city has allocated $100,000 for the project already.

“We’re in our second year of working with the Friends of Delano Park to help make this playground a reality,” Sutton said.

According to Barbara Kelly, a Friends of Delano Park member, her group has been pushing for the playground since at least 2001.

In response, Sutton announced Monday the Junior League will host various new fund-raising campaigns this year, including a brick-selling campaign already under way.

According to Catherine Lawson, project chair for the Junior League, those who want to contribute can purchase an engraved, 4-by-8-inch brick to be installed at the playground for $150. Eight-by-8-inch bricks cost $250.

The bricks can bear the name of the buyer, a loved one or the message of buyer’s choice.

The Junior League will also sell cookbooks to raise money for the playground, and Sutton said they plan to raise funds at the Alabama Charity Horse Show in October.

Features

To be located near Prospect Drive Southeast and Eighth Avenue, adjacent the Splash Pad at Delano Park, the playground will feature ramps, a smooth ground covering and specialized play equipment, making it accessible to children using walkers or in wheelchairs.

According to a preliminary drawing, specialized equipment at the playground will include swings, slides, benches and a large play-scape with ramps.

According to Sutton, the playground will provide a safe atmosphere for all children to play together.

“Any child, no matter what their ability, will be able to play here,” she said.

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