HENDERSON — A new playground exists in Henderson to fulfill children’s need for outdoor fun.
For months, representatives from Salvation Army of Henderson, Belk and KABOOM!, a Washington, D.C., nonprofit “focused on ending playspace inequity,” have worked together on the creation of a new, kid-designed playground that was installed on July 21.
It is at the Salvation Army Red Shield Club in Henderson, 2292 Ross Mill Road.
“Our mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in his name without discrimination,” said Capt. Derrick Smith, commanding officer of the Salvation Army of Henderson. “And this playground certainly serves [that] mission of having a safe environment that kids can come to and actually play on a well-put-together playground.
Smith added that his group looks “forward to is kind of allowing the playground and our Red Shield Club to be a beacon in the community for kids of all ages, races and backgrounds.”
Currently, because of COVID-19 the playground is open only to Red Shield Club children. But Smith said organizers are looking forward to being able to open it to others in the future.
The playground is designed to give children an “incredible place to play” close to where they live and learn, an opportunity that’s often difficult to achieve, organizers said in announcing the project.
In May, children from the community participated in a virtual Design Day where they “creatively thought of ideas” to make their “dream playground,” organizers said.
The new playground was then designed with “inspiration” from their drawings. It includes features like slides, a jumping platform and a rock-climbing wall.
Organizers hope “in the next few years to have ballfields, so that would include ... soccer and baseball fields,” Smith said. “The playground would actually be between the building and the ballfields. So, it’s going to complement it very well. I think at that point we will certainly be able to have community kids come and play on that playground.”