Play time on the playground

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 29, 2005

PROCTORVILLE - One, two, three: "Thank you."

That was the rally cry from students at Fairland West Elementary Monday as the ribbon was cut on their new playground.

Students chatted excitedly as they filed onto the playground for the ribbon cutting ceremony. One student from each class was hand-selected by their teacher to be among the first to "test out" the new playground.

Email newsletter signup

The rest of the students would get their chance to try it out later that afternoon.

"This is somewhat like Christmas for the kids," Principal Theresa Johnson said.

Johnson said that she has been very proud of her students as they waited patiently for the playground to be completed. The students even made cards for the construction workers. Johnson said they have great students at the school, in large part

due to the fact that the parents are so instrumental in the children's lives.

Third-grader Shane Stevens was among the first students to use the playground. Stevens said it was fun, and he liked the rock climbing wall and the "helicopters."

"The obstacle course was awesome," he said. "Everything on the playground was fun."

Bobbi Young was president of the PTO last year. Young formed a committee for the playground last year to help get the funds together.

Young said this was just phase I of the playground and hopefully in a year or two they'll be able to add on, but for Monday, it was great just to see the kid's faces.

"Awesome," she said. "It's just a long time coming for me, two years I've been working for this day."

Up until Monday, students at the school did not have a playground to play on at recess. This is the first phase of the playground which will later include fencing the area in and putting up surveillance cameras.

Even those students who were waiting until later in the day to try it out were full of anticipation and excited that the project had been completed.

"I was glad they finished it," fourth-grader Jacob Warner said.

Warner said getting the playground together actually went "pretty fast" and that he thought it was cool.

As he waited in line for lunch he said that he was going to head to the rock climbing wall first, a part that appeared to be a hit with many of the students.

"I think it's awesome," Mary Van Nostrand said as she waited in the lunch line with Warner. Van Nostrand said she too was going to probably try the slide and the rock climbing wall first.

As the ribbon cutting ceremony took place, many who helped make the playground a reality were given thanks.

The board of education, Game Time, Bobbi Young, Marty Appleton, Missy and Randy Van Horn, Matt Manns, parents and students were among those honored.

Third-grade student Chace Young, fourth-grade student Stephen Dayton and fifth-grade student Grant Clarkson cut the ribbon along with Superintendent Jerry McConnell, Marty Appleton, Randy Van Horn and Bobbi Young.

"I appreciate the cooperation between the PTO and Fairland Board of Education in making the facility available to our students," McConnell said.

The cost of the playground was $67,300 - $35,000 was given by the board of Education and the school raised $961. On Monday, Patsy Mundy, PTO president, presented the board with a check for $22,000.

Both students and teachers enjoyed testing out the new playground on Monday, something they will be able to enjoy for years to come.