With the approval of a $25,000 grant on Friday, Linden Hills nonprofit People for Parks joined a group of donors trying to raise money for a playground at Minnehaha Falls that will be accessible to all children, regardless of ability or disability.
Only one thing now stands in the coalition's way: $275,000. The playground, according to a statement released by People for Parks, is expected to cost $1 million. The playground is being spearheaded by a local group called Falls 4 All.
The high cost factors in a number of modifications needed to give disabled children as free a reign as possible. According to the People for Parks statement, the playground's design is aiming for "a space in which children or parents with physical, sensory, or developmental disabilities can use at least 70% of the outdoor equipment."
No such playground currently exists in Minneapolis, and the statement said that the playground will hopefully "enable all children to enjoy healthy social interaction, fun with peers, and opportunities to explore their own abilities."
The playground won't just benefit kids.
“In addition to providing opportunities for increased self-esteem and confidence for children with disabilities, the area’s soft surfaces allow adults with disabilities to play with their children at a playground,' Park Board commissioner Carol Kummer said in the statement. "The Falls 4 All playground will be an asset not just to the Longfellow area, but the entire region.”