Hibbing Kiwanis Club

​A new, safe and accessible playground is needed in our community. Our current playground has cracked plastic, uneven decks due to frost heaves on the footings, visible wear on the steps and platforms from years of kids playing wearing down the coating. Two play panels designed for handicap accessibility had to be removed because of their poor condition. Greenhaven playground was installed more than
30 years ago as the first “handicap-accessible” playground in the City of Hibbing. Following in that leadership, we would like to install the first Inclusive Playground in Hibbing.

Additional Information

What organizations will support this playground project?: ISD 701 Hibbing Public Schools, City of Hibbing, Hibbing Area Chamber of Commerce, Hibbing Kiwanis Club, BNSF Railroad, Security State Bank, Owens Family Charitable Foundation, local businesses and Greenhaven Elementary alumni.
How will you ensure your playground is ready to be installed by Kiwanis One Day 2020?: COVID-19 has certainly changed the way our entire world is operating, but ​play ​ is not cancelled! We re-grouped in June and scaled back our project due to decreased grant opportunities as a result of COVID-19. Our new design keeps our original goal of creating an Inclusive Community Playground while also reducing our budget. With 50% of the project cost now met, we will apply for two significant grants this Fall and Winter. (Community Development Block Grant of St. Louis County and MN DNR ​Outdoor Recreation Grant Program).​ We continue to move forward with this project so that our community will have a safe place to recreate and gather once again.
Please feel free to include additional comments about your application.: Greenhaven PTO aims to build an Inclusive Community Playground, located at Greenhaven Elementary (323 E. 37​th​ St.) in Hibbing. The goal is to bridge the gap between all abilities and generations. An “Inclusive Playground” is a universally designed, sensory-rich environment that enables children to develop physically, socially and emotionally.​ ​Current ADA standards do not require elements designed for children with down syndrome, sensory disorders, and visual and hearing impairments. An inclusive playground goes beyond minimum accessibility to create play experiences that meet a variety of needs and interests. It’s a design that’s truly inclusive -- where children of all abilities can interact and play. Greenhaven is one of two K-2 schools in Hibbing with 313 students enrolled, with about 30% of students receiving special ed services and 44% on free/reduced lunch. These numbers represent the number of children who go undiagnosed with sensory disorders or other needs who benefit from sensory integration. Play time may be their only opportunity to self regulate. Our playground design has specific pieces designed for inclusive use. These pieces include: ● a We-Go-Round for full wheelchair accessibility ● a Zipkrooz with a molded bucket seat with lock-in-place harness to provide stability and security for kids with limited core strength; paired with an Additional Bay so kids can play side-by-side ● an Omnispin Spinner for vestibular sensory stimulation and easy transfer from a mobility device ● Playbound Poured in Place surfacing to provide safe access to all pieces Total cost projection: $221,860.28. Estimated installation: 2021 We are excited about this project, and look forward to making it a reality with your assistance. A letter from Greenhaven PTO: “What does ​PLAY​ mean to you?” Fun. That was the most common answer from our community when posed by the Greenhaven Parent Teacher Organization (GPTO) on March 7, 2020. Less than two weeks later, the world changed drastically. Our schools – and playgrounds – closed due to COVID-19 on March 18. As we all went into quarantine, our kids were forced to create a normal with distant learning. Sports, outings, vacations and activities were cancelled. One thing remained true: ​PLAY was not cancelled; it simply found a new way. ​PLAY went virtual as in an aunt pretending to operate an ice cream shop with her niece over Facetime. ​PLAY was found in nature by fiddling with dirt and sticks.​ PLAY​ created new playmates in siblings, parents and caretakers. ​PLAY​ reminded us that kids are resilient, smart, honest – AND that ​PLAY looks different for different abilities. Quarantine gave us perspective. It showed us what we can do without, and yet ​PLAY was not one of them. We learned that a playground is not required to create play, but a playground is a great canvas to create play that is INCLUSIVE. Greenhaven PTO aims to build an Inclusive Community Playground at Greenhaven Elementary. The goal is to bridge the gap between all abilities and generations in the school and community of Hibbing. It would replace a 30-plus year, aging structure. PLAY​ has not been cancelled. With your help, we can extend ​PLAY TO ALL. Sincerely, Greenhaven PTO