CHAZY — A long line of kids waiting for the sole slide at Chazy Recreation Park got Che Vesneske thinking.
“It was kind of sad,” the Chazy mom said.
Much of the play equipment at the park on North Farm Road dates back a lot of years, but don’t get her wrong.
“The kids really like it,” she said. “It just needs to be improved on.”
The nonprofit Chazy Playground Committee is working on that, with the OK from the town and Chazy Lions Club.
The plan is to add to the swings, slide, monkey bars and other equipment in three phases at a total cost of about $40,000. The committee shopped around, looking for safe, fun equipment suited to various ages yet all fitting together.
Members visited the playground in Schuyler Falls to check out the Miracle Equipment play units installed there a decade ago and left impressed.
“It hasn’t chipped. It doesn’t fade,” said Vesneske, who chairs the committee.
And officials there recommended it highly.
Visitors to the Playground Committee booth at Chazy Old Home Day at the Rec Park on Sunday will see images of the equipment from Miracle the committee has chosen, beginning with Phase 1, the tot area.
That section includes such fun attractions as a tot rock climbing wall, drum boards for kids to beat out rhythms and an airplane board complete with propeller to generate imagination power. It will cost between $10,000 and $15,000, Vesneske said.
“That’s our stepping stone,” she said of the Phase 1 equipment. “All the other phases have to be built off that.”
When complete, the new playground equipment will have four slides, two “swirly climbers,” a fish bridge and a climbing wall for older kids, among other entertaining features.
“Now, it’s all about fundraising,” she said.
An ongoing bottle drive is bringing in some cash, and committee members — in bright-yellow T-shirts — will be easy to spot at Old Home Day. Their booth will include a bake sale, and tickets will be sold for a 50-50 raffle.
“Several people will be on hand to answer questions,” Vesneske said.
Her children, Jocelynne, 8, and Isabella, 5, are taking a hand in the effort, as well. Their handprints in bright colors decorate the Playground Committee banner and the information boards that will be set up in the booth on Sunday, including a price list for the equipment.
A sign-up sheet will invite visitors to donate items for a tag sale to be held in August. After Chazy Public Library’s Town-wide Yard Sale this weekend, Vesneske said, they figure people may have unsold items they’d be willing to donate for that.
The equipment for each phase won’t be purchased until enough money is collected.
“We’re hoping to do a community build,” Vesneske said about installing the units.
Some people have volunteered to provide food when that happens; others will tackle assembly. Committee Board members also include Treasurer Alan Roberts, town representative Chris Latremore, Lions Club rep Jim Lucas, Chazy Central Rural School PTO rep Jen Langlois and community reps Tessa Parent and Alanna Parent.
Volunteers are needed now — to serve on the committee, to help with fundraising.
For donations of at least $100, an individual’s name will go on a plaque; the price is $250 and up for businesses. Smaller firms can pay that in installments, Vesneske said. Payment by PayPal is available on the group’s website.
Drop returnables off at Chazy Redemption Center on Route 9 or Reisdorf Redemption Center in Dannemora or call Vesneske for pickup of large amounts.
All the details are available at chazyplayground.com and the committee’s Facebook page, or contact Vesneske at 324-0563 or ChazyPlaygroundUpdate@hotmail.co
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