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Hannibal’s Next Playground Will Be Different From The Current One

An artist's view of early designs for the new playground at Fairley Elementary School in Hannibal.  Officials stress these are very preliminary designs, that some surrounding details are not accurate and all of it is subject to change.
An artist's view of early designs for the new playground at Fairley Elementary School in Hannibal. Officials stress these are very preliminary designs, that some surrounding details are not accurate and all of it is subject to change.

There will eventually be a new school and community playground at Hannibal’s Fairley Elementary School. While the final design of the playground isn’t certain yet, one thing is: “What we will have is very different from what we have now,” said Fairley principal Roseann Schoonmaker, a member of the committee pulling the new playground together.

The current playground is built of wood. The new one won’t be. The current playground consists of activity centers that are connected to each other. Early designs of the new playground show a more open space, with play equipment separated by open spaces.

Another view of early designs for the new playground at Fairley Elementary School in Hannibal.
Another view of early designs for the new playground at Fairley Elementary School in Hannibal.

A one-size-fits-all playground will change to have centers that are appropriate for smaller children and centers more suited to older elementary children.

Schoonmaker said the committee surveyed youngsters to find out what they like in a playground and what they don’t like. From that information and other input, they created a wish list of equipment for the new playground. “Everything on the wish list fit the footprint” of the new playground, she said at a recent Board of Education meeting.

Time will tell if it also fits into the budget for the new playground.

“We’re designing a playground that’s expandable,” said Dan Salisbury, a district administrator who’s also part of the committee.

The new playground is still a ways off. It’s scheduled to be the last thing done in the current round of building renovations, which means that the old playground may be around until the summer of 2011.

1 Comment

  1. The playground is part of the reason our taxes increased this year; I feel for the seniors and folks who do not have children in the district, but are paying for this through their taxes. The other reason is the turf that school officials felt should be installed; drainage problems on the fields resulted in additional expenses. Another waste of taxpayers dollars.

    How often will the playground be used (how many months/days out of the year)? When you take into consideration the weather in this area, the playground will only be used maybe 3 to 5 months out of the year. The school district IS NOT wealthy and certainly does not need such an elaborate playground.

    My understanding is that the original playground was built using community donations obtained by volunteers. Before undertaking a project like this, school officials should ask themselves if it benefits ALL taxpayers.

    Schools should focus on academics and the programs that support children’s education. Schools officials have lost sight of the purpose of school, which is to educate our children.

    The amusement park will be empty once the novelty wears off.

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