Archived Story

Horseshoe Bend slides toward fundraising goal

Published 10:13am Thursday, April 18, 2013

Hundreds upon hundreds of children have played on the playground at Horseshoe Bend School since it began in 1992. But the equipment’s days are numbered.

“It has just outlived its usefulness, and it’s not safe for our kids at this point for continued use,” said Principal Casey Davis. “We’ve got to do something.”

To that end, Project Playground has been established – a group of parents working to raise the money necessary to purchase new playground equipment.

The project will cost close to $40,000 to purchase the unit, install it and put down ground cover. So far, the group has about $12,500 toward the goal.

Local leaders are getting involved as well – Davis said commissioner Frank Tapley and Rep. Mark Tuggle have both committed funds toward the project.

“We have to educate the entire child,” Davis said. “Part of being a good student is also being physically fit. P.E. is one of those times where students can burn off that excess energy when they’ve spent time sitting in the classroom.”

Kindergarten through sixth grade students make use of the playground during their physical education period.

One of those children is Landon Smith, who said the current equipment is “rusty and dirty.”

“I like the slides,” Smith said. “They’re twisty and different colors.”

Fundraisers will include a Spring Fling dance for the students; a yard sale, slated for May 4 on the playground or indoors if it rains; and the raffling off of donated equipment from The Sure Shot, as well as T-shirt sales.

The swings from the current playground area will remain. The wooden balance beams will be removed and replaced by the new playground unit. The other multiple feature playground units will also eventually be removed.

The new unit will include slides, monkey bars, a rock-climbing wall feature and more. Also important is that the unit will be age-appropriate for the HBS students.

“The only slides we have now, once the children get older than second grade, they are almost as long as what the slides are,” Davis said. “The unit we have now is really more for a lower elementary (age). So this will benefit the older kids – it is a great unit that will service all grades.

Project Playground needs to raise at least $30,000 of their goal by Aug. 3 to purchase the equipment. To find out more or to make a donation, call HBS at 256-329-9110.