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.
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.