Chester Rotary donates $1,000 to school playground fund

Pictured clockwise from front right,  kneeling are playground committee members Christine Anderson, Raven Norlander-McCarty, Jessica Buchanan, Rotary President Ed Caron, Jill Bruning, Principal Katherine Fogg and Chris Meyer.

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The Chester Rotary presented a check for $1,000 to representatives of the Chester Playground Committee and Katherine Fogg, principal of Chester-Andover Elementary School, during its Chester Rotary’s First Thursday Speakers Series in May.

The committee and Fogg gave a detailed presentation about the playground initiative at school in an effort to replace the 26- year-old wooden playground, known as The Structure.

Committee representatives answered questions about the need, design and funding for the proposal.   The current playground is mostly constructed of pressure-treated lumber and has reached the end of its life cycle. Splinters and out-of -date design are the most common concerns.

Raven Norlander McCarty, facilitator for the design team, explained how the team has developed a vision for the playground by gathering community input from the staff and students at CAES, the school’s facilities coordinator and citizens.  Jill Bruning gave a financial overview of how much money has been raised and how the committee plans to reach its goal of $150,000.

To date, the committee has raised $17,000 through fundraisers such as its auction dinner and Pennies for the Playground event.  Looking ahead, the group has been selected to be a potential candidate for a grant through Promise Community Initiative funded by the VT Department of Children and Families. Pooling the money from the grants, fundraisers and donations, construction of the new playground is expected to be under way during the third quarter of 2018.

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