Special needs playground gets underway

By Page H. Gifford

Supervisor Chris Fairchild, General Manager Tom Schauder, Lake Monticello Community Foundation President Nancy Parsons, and Lake Monticello Board of Directors President Larry Henson broke ground for the new special needs playground at Lafayette Park at Lake Monticello on March 17.

“If everything goes as planned we hope to have it done by Memorial Day,” said Mike Feazel, who has worked to make the playground a reality. Parsons welcomed everyone and spoke about the need for the park.

“It was inspired by a mom in a wheelchair who could not take her kids to the park.”  Parsons said the park would give everyone access to a playground that would fit their needs. “ Our optimism was based on faith in our community,” she said. Their goal of $100,000 is close. They have raised $92,000 with contributions from citizens and businesses and with the aid of grants. They will continue to hold fundraising events.

Parsons described the new playground and its features, one being a wheelchair path and other areas with a rubberized surface to aid in walking and minimizing injury. It will provide a safe and fun place for all children and their caregivers.  

“This will remove the physical and social barriers,” said Henson. He added they are also working with the county to help children outside the Lake gain access to the park when it is built.

Before the groundbreaking, Fairchild reminisced about growing up at the Lake and was glad to see the community and county come together for this worthwhile endeavor.

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