KaBOOM! Auburn makes noise as a Playful City for second straight year

The City opened an innovative, 32,000-square-foot Discovery Playground at Les Gove Park in June. - Courtesy photo/City of Auburn
The City opened an innovative, 32,000-square-foot Discovery Playground at Les Gove Park in June.
— image credit: Courtesy photo/City of Auburn

Once again, Auburn is a playful place to be.

KaBOOM! – a national nonprofit organization that promotes the importance of good health and play for children – recognized Auburn as one of 118 Playful City USA communities from 36 states. Auburn was one of only three cities represented from the Puget Sound – Mercer Island and Kenmore were the others. Longview was the fourth city from the state to make the list.

It is the second straight year Auburn has received the honor.

In the fourth year of the annual program, 33 of 118 Playful City USA communities were repeat honorees from 2009, 30 were honored for the third consecutive year and 19 communities received Playful City USA status for the fourth straight year.

The campaign drew hundreds of applicants, all of whom had to meet certain criteria to qualify.

Auburn was recognized for its Discovery Playground project – a 32,000-square-foot barrier-free playground at Les Gove Park. The project was hailed for including citizen involvement in the funding, design and support.

The $300,000 playground, which opened in June, features universally-accessible pathways and surfacing, play structures configured to support all levels of development, ramps, bridges and transfer stations – allowing every child to reach the highest play deck, elevated sand tables, interactive walls, activity panels and auditory elements.

“We appreciate that the notable aspect of this award is for Discovery Playground,” said Auburn Mayor Pete Lewis. “The way this community came together to raise the $300,000 to build this park in these economic times was nothing short of a miracle.”

Auburn supports more than 30 developed parks, 23 miles of trails – including Auburn's 4.5-mile portion of the Interurban Trail for bikers, walkers, runners and skaters – and nearly 247 acres of open space for passive and active recreation.

“We plan to continue to work with the community to create opportunities and spaces for play to ensure that Auburn remains 'More Fun Than You Imagined,'" said Daryl Faber, Auburn Parks, Arts & Recreation director.

Details about playing in Auburn can be found online at, through the Parks, Arts & Recreation Guide, which is available at the Parks, Arts & Recreation Administration building, Auburn Regional Library, and Auburn City Hall, or by calling 253-931-3043.


For more information on the KaBOOM! Playful City USA program, visit

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus

Read the Oct 21
Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Browse the archives.

Friends to Follow

View All Updates