• Luke Dault, left, and Derrik Ligget look over the Gaga Pit while excited Cedar Trails students check it out
  • Jake Nelson, left, and Devon Cole help put together the Gaga Pit
  • Luke Dault, left, and Jon Shaw connect two sections of the Gaga Pit
  • Teaming up to help erect the play structure are (from left) Carl Pietila from Superior Play, school maintenance worker Dan Andrzejewski and parent Kevin Davis
  • Cedar Trails students enjoying their new playground

Parents Put Work into Play

by Charles Honey  

When it comes to play spaces for their children, the Cedar Trails Elementary PTO really goes to work.

The PTO’s parents pitched in financially and physically to build new play structures for Cedar Trails’ 800 pupils. They wielded wrenches and post-hole diggers on a recent Friday to erect a slide and climbing equipment for the school’s preschoolers and kindergartners.

Meanwhile, the Cedar Springs High School soccer teams put together an enclosure called a Gaga Pit, where first-graders will play a kind of dodgeball game. Trevor Brown, left, a Cedar Trails parent, and Steve Harper, husband of Co-principal Jennifer Harper, install a slide

 Co-principal Jennifer Harper said PTO contributions and school funds covered the $22,000 cost of the play structures and $5,000 for the Gaga Pit. The work was overseen by a supervisor for the Superior Play company, a manufacturer’s representative for Landscape Structures. The new play spaces were needed to supplement existing equipment, she said.

“This is pretty sparse when you have 125 kids out here at a time,” Harper said.

A planned second phase of the project will include a wheelchair-accessible track for students with special needs, she said.

The varsity and JV soccer teams had a tough time figuring out how to piece together the Gaga Pit, but finally got the octagonal structure in place.

JV coach Ron Fisk, who went to Cedar Trails as a child, said it was a good community activity for his team. “It’s nice to see people who grew up in the area out here helping out,” Fisk said.

CONNECT

Cedar Trails Elementary

Submitted on: October 24th 2013

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