Singleton Park, located at the corner of Madeline and Hyacinth in Manson, is a hub for sports and play in the Lake Chelan Valley. Its ball fields are frequented throughout the year by athletes playing baseball and soccer, and children playing at the playground. While the fields have seen some upgrades, the playground is over 30 years old and safety concerns have become the driving force for some much-needed changes. After receiving a near-failing safety inspection just over a year ago, the Park District began brainstorming. The options quickly became clear- remove the playground entirely or replace it.
Play is crucial to a child’s development; it helps with balance, strength, hand-eye coordination, problem-solving, social skills, learning and cognitive skills, as well as emotional and mental well-being. Simply put, play is the building block of strong people and a strong community. That being said, removing Singleton’s playground was not an option.
As the research began and progressed, the project transformed from a basic need to replace the play equipment. Quickly it grew into a desire to provide our community’s families not only with a place to play, but a place where people of all abilities can play side-by-side… an inclusive playground… a place of wonder! That’s when the community spirit really took over.
After receiving conceptual designs from various playground equipment manufacturers, a committee was formed to help with equipment selection. Committee members include Alicia Alexander, Rob Campbell, Johnny Morfin, Brian Patterson, Robin Pittman, Taylor Quigley, Ben Riippi, Bill Sharkey, Adelina Velasco, and Maria Zaragoza. Their goal was to review the proposed playground designs, make changes based on community need, and make a final recommendation to the Manson Parks Board of Commissioners.
On Thursday, December 12th, 2019, at the Manson Parks regular monthly Board meeting, Commissioners unanimously approved purchase of the proposed Burke playground equipment. The playground will feature a large structure designed for kids ages 5 to 12, a separate large structure for kids ages 2 to 5, a “Rev8” spinner, “Orb Rocker”, swing set, and several other items. The total for the equipment came to $133, 326.20.
Funding for the equipment was made possible by the following sponsors.
Thank you to:
• Tom & Meg Names Family Foundation
• Burke Move With Us Grant
• Lake Chelan Rotary
• Community Foundation of North Central Washington
• Lake Chelan Community Services Council
• Chelan-Douglas Developmental Disabilities Program
• Wenatchee Valley Medical Group
• Lake Chelan Boating Club
• Green Dot Sub Shop
• Lake Chelan Boating Club
The next step in the process includes selection of the ground surfacing material, which is a vital piece of the equation. It will likely be a combination of Engineered wood fiber (wood chips), and a soft composite rubber material called pour-in-place. Both meet the requirements for wheelchair accessibility and fall cushioning, as well as providing a tactile element to satisfy sensory needs. A concrete border and benches will be installed around the playground. Engineered wood fiber is expected to cost as much as $25,000, and the areas of pour-in-place could come in at $60,000. Supervised installation, where the manufacturer provides a trained specialist to lead community volunteers during the course of installation, is expect to be $12,000. Cost of the concrete border, benches, and ground work are yet to be determined.
Community support for this project has been incredible, but there are still opportunities to help!
Through December 31st, 2019, visit www.givencw.org to donate through CFNCW’s Give NCW campaign. After that, checks can be mailed to Manson Parks, PO Box 590, Manson WA 98831. Cash and credit card donations can also be accepted at our office on 142 Pedoi Street in Manson.
Installation of the equipment will begin in the spring, weather permitting.