Adel Elementary School had new playground equipment, a fitness and balance obstacle course, installed at the school on July 17. The new equipment is phase two of four of replacing the playground equipment at the school.
The Dallas County Foundation contributed $8,000 to the project and an additional $5,000 was contributed by the Lion’s Club. The Lion’s Club also had volunteer workers on the scene helping install the equipment which includes balancing equipment, climbing equipment and metal posts.
“The Lion’s Club of Adel has really supported the vision for new playground equipment at Adel Elementary,” Carole Erickson, Adel Elementary Principal said.
The City of Adel did all the excavating work, the A-D-M custodial staff did the prep work and fathers from Adel Elementary were also volunteering their time to help install the new equipment. There was one oversight director from Bolen Recreation at the site as well to supervise everything.
Erickson said that they chose this piece of equipment in part because the obstacle course is “developmentally appropriate,” for children who are four to eight years old.
“We are really committed to health and fitness here and we felt like it will get kids moving,” Erickson said. “It’s kind of something that you have to move through, we felt that was very very important, especially for children with developmental delays to get their strength in their muscles and their coordination.”
The City of Adel has been playing their part in the project as well with help from city council member Shirley McAdon.
“I asked the city council if they would support this project with some equipment and some man power and everybody was very supportive of it,” McAdon said. “It’s definitely an extension of the parks in Adel and adds another dimension for our families up in this area of the city.”
Erickson is optimistic about how it will be received by the kids in town and at the school.
“They will be so excited to see something new,” Erickson said. “The novelty of it just being new is exciting but I think they’ll really like the challenge that it presents. We have a lot of little what you call ‘lily pads’ or ‘steppers’ and I think they’ll like the challenge of ‘can I make it through without falling off’ and I think they’ll really love that.”
With the possibility of kids “falling off” while trying to cross the obstacle course Erickson said that safety is not an issue with the new equipment because of its height and following code with underlayment underneath so if they fall they have plenty of padding.
“I have much less concern with the new equipment that we have in versus what we had previously,” Erickson said. “What we had previously was very tall and I had some sleepless nights worrying about kids falling off that equipment. This, we just don’t have that height anymore and we are really committed to providing that important underlayment as well as keeping it maintained so there’s always at least 12 inches of underlayment if not thicker.”
On the day of installation, Fareway provided and delivered bottled water to the workers, Kum & Go provided breakfast and Eric Schepers State Farm provided lunch. Concrete was provided from American Concrete.
“It’s a really big community project,” McAdon said. “We can see all the people that helped, businesses and private and public too.”
Erickson said that this is a reflection of the community.
“Everybody is just willing and we’re just so lucky to live in a community where not only public, but private agencies really support the schools and what we’re trying to accomplish with children. It’s just always like that here.”