BY REBECCA ISENHART
On Friday, Sept. 18, families from the Birchwood school community gathered to celebrate the school’s brand-new, colorful playground, which had just been completed with special flooring earlier in the week.
The playground is more than just a place for kids to expend some energy. For the Birchwood community, it represents the power of teamwork.
Birchwood Elementary had only planned some minor upgrades in late 2014, hoping to make the playground more inviting for older children. However, that project led to a major discovery: some of the playground’s wooden supports were rotting beneath the soil. Instead of fundraising for a special addition, the school community regrouped and began fundraising for a completely new playset.
A playground committee was formed, and in three months they raised $22,931.69. The school district and PTO also contributed funding. The quick fundraising effort allowed volunteers and contractors to get to work on the structure over the summer, finishing up the project just in time for the school’s annual barbecue.
The ribbon cutting was an energetic affair, with children cheering and chanting “Cut it! Cut it!” while they coiled up like trackstars, ready to make a dash for the zipline and the monkey bars as soon as the red ribbon fell. And when it finally did, nothing could hold them back.