HOISINGTON — Pride Park in Hoisington will once again be a place for pride and be a place the city’s children to have fun, fresh air and exercise. When the entire project is funded, there will be a shelter house for picnics and for entire families to make bonds and memories.
The first phase of the project came together on Friday after the mounds and mounds of compost had been delivered, about $42,000 worth of equipment was unboxed, and 30 adult volunteers took time off work to help put together the equipment. The entire freshman class of Hoisington High School volunteered to help out, too, and actually chose the project as one that they wanted to help with.
Some of the students were a bit bewildered by the complex instructions and tools, but two helpers were available from the playground company to help steer everyone in the right direction.
The HHS students were divided into groups of four or five students with an adult instructor. The Hoisington City workers, including the police chief and city manager were out in full force. Over 90 holes were drilled with donated equipment.
It took most of the day to put the equipment together.
A good part of the community has been involved in one way or another, between raising the funds, applying for grants, putting it together, or making a donation. The Pride Park committee was led by Jessica Baze.
Local company, Roto-Mix, is sand blasting and painting the gym and swing set that were already there, and the Pride Park jalopy was sandblasted and repainted by volunteers as well.
Combined, what was old is now new again by people that worked together.
The last upgrade
In 1993, the Hoisington Park and Tree Board members Grant Lane, Otis Weber, Lee VanScyoc, Steve Ritter, Patty Nicholson, Sandy Ray and Ceceila Conrad thought the city parks needed new and updated park equipment. Andy Starbuck, a local student, decided for an Eagle Scout project, he would lend the group a hand by surveying kingergarteners through 3rd graders on what they would like to see in the parks. Andy’s survey was of 210 children.
At this point, the Hoisington Park and Tree Board started to raise money for the project. Cash donations were made by many local businesses. Due to the high cost of ready made playground equipment, the group asked the city council if the Power Plant staff could build the equipment. The city council approved their request and the power plant staff went to work. Lowe, Dave Wondra, Bob Crutcher, Tom Brown, Fred Kline, Mark Bahr and John Carey were excited about the project. The dragster was born along with other equipment for the parks.