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New Lake Tye playground open
Kids of all ages can swing, bounce and bop



Alfredo Renteria, 2, of Monroe reaches into the mouth of a fiberglass salmon that is part of the new playground at Lake Tye Park in Monroe during a dedication ceremony on Thursday, June 1. Along with the traditional slides and swings, the playground also has features for climbing and riding, all with safety in mind.



MONROE — The new playground equipment at Lake Tye Park proved to offer more than a neat place to play, but also a ground for community building and inclusiveness.
City officials, along with county officials and playground design representatives from Sitelines, cut the ribbon to open and dedicate the park on June 1.
Children galloped on the semi-bouncy rubber flooring, whooped with delight, climbed the walls and equipment, and swung on the park’s new, unique merry-go-swing.
“It’s awesome! I like this way better than the old (equipment) because that old merry-go-round looked dangerous,” said Cobi Seslar, a mother of a 9-year-old. “It’s interesting for all ages and seems safer.”
As Seslar watched her son and her friend’s 4-year-old daughter swing on the merry-go-swing, one boy fell off, but bounced right back up unharmed. Definitely safer.
Other parents reclined in the grass, watching their kids and talking with other parents, while others chased their kids around to make sure they didn’t climb too high or fall.
Kids from ages 2 to 12 were running and playing all over the new equipment.
In one area there are chimes with attached mallets. The chimes echoed through the park, along with children’s laughter and exaltations of joy, producing a symphony of the coming summer.
“This is our third time here and we love it!” said mom of five Joey Fegler as she bounced her youngest on her hip. “I like the variety for all the ages, and I think it’s all distributed really nicely.”
Fegler watched her kids swing, climb and traverse the playground, keeping up with the energetic young ones. Proud of being a mom, her hoodie read, “Mama all day, everyday.”
“That’s right!” she said with a smile about her hoodie.
City officials brought their kids, too. City Councilman Jeff Rasmussen brought his two kids and said they were having so much fun, he would have trouble getting them to go home.
Mayor Geoffrey Thomas said the park was everything they’d been working towards. He commended city staff on getting the project open by Memorial Day weekend.
“It’s a wonderful improvement to our park system,” Thomas said. “The old equipment was really popular and heavily used for almost 20 years, and I know this new set will be used for a long time.”
The new playground equipment cost $320,000; the
money mainly came from new housing development and parks mitigation fees.
“We’re really excited to have this new park playground,” Thomas told the crowd.
City parks director Mike Farrell offered cookies, and the kids, plus City Councilman Jim Kamp, were happy to run up and take one and run back to the playground to play. Kamp jokingly challenged other council members to ride the merry-go-swing with him.
The new playground equipment features chimes, a rubberized surface, tunnels, climbing challenges, smaller equipment for tiny tots, bigger equipment for the older kids, and ADA-accessible play areas, plus picnic tables and spinning chairs.
The city’s playground board recommended the new equipment be more inclusive and playable for children of all ages and physical abilities. This new set seems to have hit that mark.
The city views the new park equipment as a major success, and hopes to get new playground equipment at Sky River Park in 2018.

 

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