Music Park for Montezuma School Playground

October 29, 2018

“Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.”

– Plato

Montezuma Iowa Lions ClubIn recognition of Lions Clubs International’s centennial, local Lions clubs were challenged by their national organization to sponsor a significant project in each of their communities that would be of a lasting nature and add to each club’s legacy. For the Montezuma club, this meant the addition of a music park, including nine-units of percussion musical instruments, to the Montezuma school.

Music Park Outdoor Instruments

ABcreative consultant, Larry Rife, worked with the Montezuma Lions Club and the school to bring Percussion Play outdoor musical instruments to the school, which included:

Montezuma IA Music Park CavatinaPaired with the color-coded Cavatina is a color-coded Music Book featuring well-known songs, such as “Old MacDonald Had A Farm,” “Twinkle, Twinkle,” “Itsy Bitsy Spider,” “She’ll Be Comin’ Round the Mountain” and “Row, Row, Row Your Boat.”

Carrie Burnett, Montezuma school instrumental music instructor, helped decide what instruments to include in the music park. She commented, “I’m excited to have this musical addition for our students and children in the community. Exploring the different sounds that you can make and playing the songs from the included songbook is fun for all ages.  I am so thankful for the musical playground.”

Music Park – Fine Arts and Sensory Experience for All Abilities

The Lions club was particularly supportive of the project because it was in support of fine arts, providing opportunity for children to have fun creating and appreciating music at a young age, something that will last them a lifetime. In the playground musical environment, it is said, “there are no wrong notes.”

Montezuma IA Music ParkAnother plus is that all the instruments are wheelchair-accessible. This factor has already been bringing joy to a wheelchair-bound Montezuma student.

The musical playground has been a wonderful addition.  Students now have the cultural exposure that gets them excited about the fine arts.

— Kurt Hanna, Elementary Principal at Montezuma school

It quickly became evident that the instruments can be enjoyed at a very early age, too. Zuma Zoo Daycare is located across the street from the musical instruments, and the daycare children were among the first to try them out.

Alexa Wheaton, Zuma Zoo owner and director, said, “The new musical instruments have added great educational value to the playground. It has been so fun to watch our kids interact with one another while playing. We especially love the xylophone that has the songs with the color-coded notes to play.”

On behalf of Montezuma Schools, we would like to sincerely thank the Montezuma Lions Club for their generous donation of the outdoor musical equipment to our school.  It was very evident that the students love the new instruments as they were playing them while our maintenance staff was still securing the final bolts. These instruments will provide our students a wonderful opportunity each day while at recess to work with their friends to create a wonderful new tune.  This equipment will serve our school and entire community for years to come.

— Dave Hoeger, School Superintendent

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Project credits:
  • Article and photos provided by Lion Roger Allen.
  • Project Committee. Joe Barrow, then club president; Larry Huff, Boyd Sparks, Roger Allen, and Rick Talbert, current club president.
  • Grant writing assistance: Kathy Lents, County Extension director, and her staff.
  • Funding came from the club, from grants and generous individual donations.
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