Design unveiled for Crescent Creek Park inclusive playground
Earlier this month the city’s Parks Commission unveiled its plans for an “inclusive playground” to be installed at Crescent Creek Park.
Stephanie Payne, chair of the commission’s Maritime PlayZone Committee, noted that the project has been in the works for more than two years. “It’s really been a journey to get us to this point,” Payne said. “And now on a sunny summer day, we’re here to celebrate our accomplishments and how far we’ve come.”
The playground is being designed to be accessible to children of all ages and abilities, including those with disabilities.
Funding for the project has come from PenMet Parks, Gig Harbor Rotary, the Morris Family Foundation, the City of Gig Harbor and many local citizens.
“The journey this summer has been a fabulous ride,” Payne said in an interview following the unveiling ceremony. “It started off with a $25,000 donation from Wade and Beth Perrow, and that was followed by a stream of other donations from local citizens.
“And last year we also got a design grant of $65,000 from Shane’s Inspiration, a national company that specializes in accessible playgrounds, for an essay we submitted,” Payne said.
In addition, Mayor Chuck Hunter recently announced that the playground has been ranked second out of 44 projects from around the state for a $180,000 grant from the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program (WWRP).
“It still has to be approved by the legislature but it’s in the governor’s budget, so we feel pretty confident about it,” Payne said. “We’ve already raised $170,000 from the community, so if this grant gets the go-ahead, we’ll only have $35,000 left to achieve our goal,” Payne said.
Tom Bugert, WWRP outreach coordinator, noted that his organization has funded more than $11 million in projects on the Kitsap Peninsula over the past several years, and more than $40 million in Pierce County.
“In Gig Harbor, we’ve made grants for the Skateboard Park, Skansie Brothers Park, the Knight Forest and several property acquisitions on Fox Island and the Key Peninsula,” Bugert said. “You have some powerhouse legislators here on the Kitsap Peninsula and they support the work we’re doing. I’m optimistic that this playground will get funded because things are starting to look a little better, and both governor candidates have said they plan to support and strengthen our program.”