Recreation Center Playground Upgrade, Knoxville, IA

October 15, 2018

In Knoxville, IA, the recreation center playground needed a makeover. About 30 years old, the playground was original to the facility and had basic play equipment – a slide, a couple of climbing structures and a swing set.

On average, roughly 300 visitors a month use the playground; it is especially busy when other sports activities such as soccer, tennis and basketball are in progress.

ABcreative consultant, Larry Rife, developed a plan that offered more than just the traditional play equipment and built in the 7 elements of play. According to Brandon Nemmers, Parks and Recreation Director, the community is extremely happy – the new playground ties the whole area together.

One Playground Becomes Two

The original playground was one big playground for all ages. Having one area of the playground focused on the younger children enables the equipment to better focus on their needs, such as developing fine and gross motor skills.

Older children need a play space that focuses on helping them develop their senses, physical abilities and creativity so climbing, swinging and sliding are important.

Elements of Play for the Playground

Through the design process, the team found the right combination of play equipment – and colors – while at the same time offering unique play equipment designed to get the kids active. You’ll see the Burke equipment offers:

  • Wave climbers, these trendy looking components help children develop strength, balance and coordination.
  • Pod climbers, which encourage children to climb to different heights, building balance, strength and self-confidence.
  • Apex hole climbers, another trendy looking piece, these provide open site lines for improved supervision.
  • Slides, which help develop children’s balance and coordination, increase self-confidence and are a lot of fun!
  • Climbers, such as net climbers, to help build upper body strength, balance and coordination.

Looking through the array of color choices, we were able to find a blue and green combination that matched the new tennis courts.

The ABcreative Experience

I like the quality and uniqueness of the equipment. We had lots of color choices and were able to find a combination that matched the new tennis courts. In addition, I helped our guys do the install and found it very easy to put together with the one-bolt system. Larry was great to work with. He met me on-site, listened to the ideas I threw out, measured the space and came back with three great options. Purchasing the equipment using the Burke matching grant enabled us to get better equipment than originally budgeted for, too.

— Brandon Nemmers, Parks and Recreation Director, Knoxville, IA

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