Volunteers were busy working with City staff in building a new playground at Roegner Park during Clean Sweep last month. RACHEL CIAMPI, Auburn Reporter

Auburn named Playful City USA for ninth consecutive year

Designation helps secure grants for playgrounds, fitness equipment and more

  • Sunday, May 21, 2017 6:56pm
  • News

For the ninth consecutive year, the City of Auburn has been honored with a Playful City USA designation by KaBOOM!, a nationally recognized non-profit dedicated to ensuring that all kids get a childhood filled with the balanced and active play needed to thrive.

Playful City USA honors cities and towns throughout the country for putting the needs of families first so kids can learn, grow and develop important life skills. These communities are transforming ordinary places into playful spaces and using play as a solution to the challenges facing their residents.

Auburn is one of only four cities in the state of Washington and 258 communities in the United States to earn the designation.

Already this year, the City has worked with volunteers during Clean Sweep to build a new playground at Roegner Park, will begin offering free fitness in the parks with Shape Up Auburn from June 26-Aug. 3, will provide a free drop-in program, Summer Fun in the Parks, from 11 a.m.-3 p.m., Mondays through Thursday from July 5 through Aug. 17 at Lea Hill Park, Brannan Park, and Cedar Lanes Park, and a free KidsDay event on Friday, June 23.

“We plan to continue to work with the community to create opportunities and spaces for play that promote a healthy and livable community,” said Daryl Faber, Auburn Parks, Arts & Recreation dDirector.

As a KaBOOM! Playful City USA designee, the City of Auburn has been the recipient of KaBOOM! grants over the last six years totaling $135,000. Grants have helped fund new playgrounds at Game Farm Park, Brannan Park, Lea Hill Park, Dysktra Park, and Isaac Evans Park as well as outdoor fitness equipment at Game Farm Park.

As cities are becoming hotbeds for innovation, communities throughout the country are creating inventive ways to attract and retain residents. Playful City USA honorees are taking bold action to ensure kids have great places to play – all with the ultimate goal of making play the easy choice for all kids, no matter where they live. In addition to the playground down the street, Playful City USA communities are turning grocery stores, vacant lots, crosswalks and sidewalks into opportunities for play.

“We are thrilled to recognize the City of Auburn for putting kids first,” said KaBOOM! CEO James Siegal. “The well-being of our communities starts with the well-being of our kids, and play is critical for them to thrive. It is our collective responsibility to ensure that all kids get the childhood they deserve filled with play.”

For more information about Auburn Parks, Arts & Recreation, call 253-931-3043 or visit auburnwa.gov/play.

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