Playground Reopens as Kids, Parents Ached for Return
Jul 13, 2016 10:24AM ● Published by Bryan Scott
Dozens of kids from elementary to high school age listen to the speakers during the grand opening of the Fairmont Park playground on June 10. —Travis Barton
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By Travis Barton | firstname.lastname@example.org
After a long wait, kids have a place to play again at Fairmont Park.
On Friday, June 10, a ribbon-cutting ceremony was held at the Fairmont Park playground, officially reopening the playground after closing it for reconstruction a few years ago. Dozens of children were in attendance to commemorate the event.
“I have been following this project the whole time and I’m really glad we’re here today,” Amy Barry, Sugar House Community Council chair, said to the audience.
The City’s Public Services Department and the Parks and Public Lands Division invited the public to the ceremonial ribbon cutting where Barry; Lisa Adams, Salt Lake City Council member for District 7; and Salt Lake City mayor Jackie Biskupski shared a few remarks.
Though the park was dedicated in 1937, it’s been around for 116 years and was originally a part of the Salt Lake Country Club.
“This playground is going to make it a place where everybody wants to be,” Adams said.
Jennifer Nelson, a neighbor who lives about as close to the park as possible, said she hopes having the playground open again drives off suspicious or unwanted characters in the park.
“It’s already started to get rid of the some of the worse elements of the park, like maybe transients, with all the noise and children screaming,” Nelson said.
“If the people who are here to play on the playground are here, that means people who maybe don’t belong in the park don’t want to hang here, so that’s really good,” Adams said to those in attendance.
Biskupski said her son, who helped with the ribbon cutting, is very excited to come play at the park this summer and that the park will “encourage creativity, imagination and family time.”
Neighbors were excited to finally have the playground back not only for their kids but also for the neighborhood. Nelson said that without the playground the kids get bored, so they haven’t been able to do their Easter egg hunts or Halloween activities.
“It’s kind of a nice little hangout for the neighborhood. … We’re so thrilled because we’ll be able to get a little bit of that connection going again,” Nelson said.
“We’ve seen Sugar House change dramatically in the past few years. The playground will be one more gathering place in this unique neighborhood,” Biskupski said.
Nelson said her five-year-old son was the first to notice the fences coming down around the playground.
“I don’t think they had half of the fences down before he ran outside and was already on the playground going down the slides, so [we are] so very excited,” Nelson said.
The ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the official opening of the playground, but it was open the prior few weeks, getting full usage out of its amenities.
Nelson said the park is usually pretty full from about 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
“We noticed at the end of last week that [a tire contraption] was falling off; it was crooked already. … I’ve seen people come and make adjustments and repairs on things,” Nelson said. “In two weeks this playground is well loved.”
The playground is located very close to Fairmont Youth City and the Boys and Girls Club, giving those organizations a nearby attraction for their youth.
“I’m really excited for this day and I can’t wait to see kids playing on it every time I visit,” Barry said.