Boy swings from obstacle on playground

By 8 a.m., Wednesday, lawn fabric was rolled out.

Then scoops of mulch were packed into place.

And before noon, Washington Elementary School Principal Cheryl Cook was cautiously optimistic that little feet could switch from their hillside rolls on the grass to swinging, sliding and climbing away for recess.

Less than an hour later, squeals of joy and the chatter of Kindergarten students echoed between Fourth and Fifth streets, followed in turn by the next two grades of the building. 

Now,  below is just a teaser of the first steps and laughter from Wednesday.

Adults at home please let your students' teacher know if you've opted out of their likeness appearing in our publications and when we invite local media to our campuses. 

The deadline for opting out is Tuesday, Oct. 19. 

Wednesday our incredible staff will review the full footage of students on opening day to ensure discernable faces are publishable. 


"They keep coming up to me, thanking me, but I'm not the one who did this," smiled Cook blinking back a few droplets and turning away, seemingly to watch the sharing of the new equipment.

District facilities staff remained on site through recess and into the afternoon as they continued work on swings and past the orange cones where students still await the installation of basketball posts, backboards and lighting. 

"That was great to see, to hear them so happy," said MCS Facilities and Transportation Manager Darrell Prim. "Now we're waiting for the city to complete the court backboards and lighting. And for the grass to grow."


Then Thursday at Marietta City Council as elected officials got a glimpse of the play at the city-owned park, Public Works Director Jim Wark assured Lands, Buildings and Parks Committee Chairman Bill Farnsworth that the city would be on site this coming week.

"The lights will be a Christmas present," Wark prefaced. "Everybody knows how deliveries have gone... And the foundation for the lights and basketball poles will be poured next week. But I'm not going to let them put the backboards on them for a couple weeks after that to let that concrete cure." 

Farnsworth said he witnessed the success, too, while driving past Thursday.

"I want to thank the coalition of people who made all of that possible," said Farnsworth. "You could hear the joy."

Prim added this week that the fence, co-funded by the Northwest Territory Foundation and the Washington County Public Library is also expected to arrive by the winter holidays.

"And we're paying for the fence we'll put in, we need that so our trucks and other equipment can get in when we need to work on things," Prim explained.

But for now, families are staying until dark and loving the venue to play.