One of the things that continually impresses me about Homer is the number of talented people and the generosity with which they share those talents. Those things came through so clearly in the past year as the Homer Playground Project (HoPP) grew from an idea into a finished product, fueled by so many dedicated folks.
Our kids are past playground age, so when we heard about the HoPP request for kids' input for a new playground, we didn't make it a priority to get there. In some places I would expect to hear about such input, but the idea might just fizzle and die or take years to come to fruition. I couldn't say exactly, but it doesn't seem like they've been working on this project for more than a year. The organization needed to raise over $200,000, a goal which they ended up exceeding by quite a bit. They sold engraved fencing ($50/slat), wrote grants and fundraised to make it all happen.
This week was "Build Week". From Sunday last week through Sunday (today), hundreds of community members volunteered thousands of combined hours. Shifts ran from 8-12:30 and 12:30-5 each day, with food and drinks galore provided for those who showed up, as well as entering volunteers into drawings for each shift they worked for a chance to win massages, meals and other cool things.
|Many tents were erected for food, tools, saws, and more|
When I arrived on the site to volunteer today I signed a waiver, got a duct tape name badge, got a safety orientation, was given gloves and led to the site by a safety personnel who would hand us off to one of the foremen who were assigning tasks. I ended up helping 2 other folks dig the holes for a bench. It was a messy affair but it did eventually get done!
|An 'artsy' touch|
For me the funniest part of this playground is how 'artsy' it is. There are so many stylish additions, courtesy of our very talented, artistic Homerites (oops, I guess we're called Homeroids now!). The biggest bummer is that my kids are past playground age, but this is an awesome addition to our community and something it has sorely needed so I am so glad it happened and I got to be a small part of the process.
And if you want to know more about it, check out the HoPP website at http://www.homerplaygroundproject.org/.