The students of Crystal Springs Elementary School in Bothell are celebrating the start of the new year for a whole different reason – they have a new playground set.
Unveiled at the school’s ‘welcome back’ picnic, the playground was not only many years in the making but a community driven project.
“It’s very exciting to be here today. For us, we made this into a big community event because we have our big playground unveiling. This is an exciting day for us,” said Crystal Springs Elementary Principal May Pelto.
Work started on the entirety of the playground a few years prior to Pelto’s coming to Crystal Springs. One of the first things she did for the project was break it into two manageable goals. The first, accomplished in February, was the play fields. The second, was the playground set.
“We had a climbing web installed in February of last year, and then we wrote grants, contacted community partners and hosted a community auction and raised enough money to install our second phase of the playground,” Pelto said.
However, Quadrant Homes, which is currently building the King’s Corner and Filbert Glen in Bothell, came to the rescue when contacted by parents.
“We were working on a community in Bothell, called the Filbert Glen, and our project manager was approached by a neighbor in the PTA,” said Bonnie Geers, vice-president of community development for Quadrant.
The school had put the playground equipment in storage until they could find the funds to complete the project.
“We think that building in a community also includes giving back to a community,” Geers said. “The people who are going to buy our homes are future parents of children who would attend that school, so we were happy to help.”
After hearing about the lack of funding, Quadrant, along with partner, Pacific Landscape Management, donated time and funding of $5,600 to finish the installation of the playground equipment.
“This is a great way for us to be engaged in, participate in and make sure that Bothell is a great place for people to make their homes, and that’s really rewarding for us,” Geers said. “This is part of Quadrant’s legacy. This is not a one-time kind of community involvement event for us. We feel like it’s part of our DNA that we give back to community organizations.”
And, those kids were happy as could be once the ribbon cutting ceremony was finally over.
“I’m very excited. I like the slide because it’s fun to go down and slide very, very fast,” said Jack Gillis, student at Crystal Springs. “Thank you! I think it’ll be fun for all the kids at Crystal Springs to play with.”