By Alyssa Ross
Special to The SUN
Before the sun set last Saturday, children in Arboles had a new place to play.
A new playground was fully assembled in less than eight hours with the help of more than 150 people, including members of the Tiffany Allison Rosa Arboles Historical Society (TARA), KaBOOM! organizers and volunteer area residents.
“TARA is very grateful to KaBOOM! and The Colorado Health Foundation for accepting our playground application for our small and rural area of Tiffany, Allison, and Arboles,” said Sandy Gladfelter of TARA. “The children of this area have long needed of a gathering place where friends their own age could have a fun, safe and enjoyable interaction. TARA Community Center is honored to be able to house such a wonderful playground for the children of this area. This playground has become a dream come true for our community and for children in future decades.”
The new playground, made possible with support from the Colorado Health Foundation, will provide more than 80 kids in Arboles with a safe place to play. It is the second to be built by KaBOOM! and the Colorado Health Foundation with a goal of inspiring kids to get up, get outside and get active.
“KaBOOM! worked closely with the Arboles community to plan and build a safe playground. Now, by their own design, kids have a quality place to play,” said Kelly Dunkin, vice president of philanthropy for the Colorado Health Foundation. “Research shows that play is crucial for our kids’ physical, social and emotional development and for the health and our communities. We are excited and proud to partner with KaBoom! and the beautiful community of Arboles to increase the number of kids who have fun and active options for play and to help make Colorado the healthiest state in the nation.”
Planning for the playground began at a Design Day event held in October. Local children and community leaders met with organizers from KaBOOM! to design their dream playgrounds. The final design of the playground was inspired by their drawings.
Prior to this project, area children did not have a playground. For years, TARA, with support from local parents and residents, had been saving money for a playground. This partnership with the Colorado Health Foundation and KaBOOM! helped this project finally come to fruition.