Work is underway at playgrounds all around Washington, D.C. The more than 30 playground renovations are part of an initiative of the D.C. Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) known as Play DC. Washington D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray has allocated $35 million to the playground improvement project.
The first of the completed playgrounds, located at Rosedale Recreation Center, celebrated its grand opening in late May. The playground offers a fully inclusive play experience for children and families, and it was designed to mimic many of the monuments located near the National Mall. Façades of the White House, U.S. Capitol, Lincoln Memorial and Washington Monument give the playground a truly signature look.
Another amazing project that’s part of Play DC is at the Palisades Recreation Center. The playground offers a Native American-themed play structure that pays tribute to the Potomac River settlement. And keeping in mind the whole community, planners included the HealthBeat® Outdoor Fitness System for ages 13+. “We opened that playground on July 4,” said Bridget Stesney, chief operating officer at DPR, “and it has been packed every day since!”
In July, DPR celebrated playground grand openings at Noyes Recreation Center and Fort Stanton Recreation Center on July 19 and 20, respectively. The Noyes playground was inspired by nature and includes lots of climbing rocks, while two play structures at Fort Stanton offer a fort theme for lots of imaginative play.
DPR is hosting grand openings regularly—the next one is happening Monday, Aug. 12, at the Raymond Recreation Center. And when they’re not celebrating grand openings, they’re celebrating ground breakings. The entire DPR team is excited to be able to renovate the playgrounds citywide, and hope that they will become spaces where all generations can come together to be active, have fun and play.