There were plenty of hands helping out in the rebuilding of Largo Central Park’s playground. About 80 volunteers, including 20 kids, were ready to dig, hammer and bolt away.
On Saturday morning volunteers joined Dominica Recreation Products employees install new playground equipment.
The new playground will feature five brand new play structures and components that haven’t been used at any other facility in the country, park officials said.
The best part about it is that local residents were part of the process.
“This is a big deal to set this up, but it’s worth it because they get the connection to the park, they’ll want to protect it…they’ll want to keep the park up and keep it nice,” said Greg Brown, Largo Parks Superintendent, during a break in the build.
In addition to developing a strong connection between residents and a facility they are going to be using for years, the community build saved the city approximately $10,000 by using volunteers instead of paid workers.
Brown was thrilled with the turnout. He stressed how important it is to have residents play a hands-on role in the playground’s construction.
All the large, heavy pieces were already in place when the volunteers arrived, but they got to bolt plastic components that make up the structures and assist with other aspects of the build.
Largo resident Jeanette Flores brought her three children to help with the community build.
“I know this is our park, and we want to keep it nice and help make it what it’s going to be,” she said. “We use it, so let’s take care of it.”
Her 8-year-old son Ryan said he was ecstatic about helping build the playground. It’s “Awesome,” he said.
The main part of the build was completed by the end of the day.
Once the installation of the synthetic turf is complete the playground will be ready to go. Brown said the turf should take about three weeks. The new playground is scheduled to open sometime in mid-May.
Flores and her family can’t wait for its opening.
“Absolutely! That’s definitely next on our calendar," Flores said.