Elsmere parents launch into fundraising

New playground would cost $100k, grants and community support sought

The current Elsmere elementary playground.

The current Elsmere elementary playground. Photo by Marcy Velte.

— The group sent a letter home to parents seeking help with various fundraising projects.

Donation cans will soon be placed throughout town, and movie nights, fitness days and a hair cut benefit with Elsmere hairdresser Samara Bartula are all scheduled.

But the main fundraiser will be an Elsmere Community Family Day and Silent Auction in both June of 2012 and 2013. The event will be $10 per family and include various family-friendly activities and a neighborhood walk.

The group is seeking items for the auction, screened T-shirts for the walk and help with printing flyers and banners.

Design ideas for the proposed playground call for one large play structure with multiple levels, two or three slides, a rock wall, another climbing element and some independent play options. The plan also calls for landscaping improvements and repairs to current equipment where needed.

An entirely new playground would cost about $100,000. Holstein and Cohen said the plan is to raise $25,000 from the school community, apply for $65,000 in grants and seek an additional $10,000 in donations from local businesses and residents.

If the entire $100,000 can’t be raised, it would take $50,000 to purchase new equipment for the upper playground, replace the large wooden structure and maintain the landscaping.

“Whatever money we raise by June of next year will go toward the equipment. We’re not going to go into debt for a playground,” said Holstein.

The group is also committed to preserving the character of the playground, including the trees integrated into the playground’s aesthetics.

“This is a major concern of ours as well, and we will make every single effort possible to maintain the integrity of them,” read a letter to parents.

Donations are now being accepted. To learn more visit www.elsmereplayground.com.

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