What Happens If We Win?
A community build day of a Bienenstock Natural Playground.
By now, you may be staring off into the distance on your evening walks, daydreaming about the $100,000 natural playground that could be a new fixture in your community.
You may be wondering about the next steps, the logistics and the build. We spoke to Adam Bienenstock, CEO of Bienenstock Natural Playgrounds, who filled us in on the details of creating a new community centrepiece.
The first step will be for Bienenstock to talk to community organizers. Their team will travel to your town and view your chosen space, which must be at least 400-square-metres of flat or rolling ground. They'll establish a link to the nearest national park and consult with the Canadian Wildlife Federation.
Over six weeks, there will be two public forums and two steering committee meetings. The established steering committee will assist with the preparation and consult with the Bienenstock team to approve drawings and organize the community build day. The committee will also manage the playground once it's finished.
Another part of planning is determining the local resources that could be used to make the park even bigger and better. Logs, boulders - what does nature boast in your area that will add to the playground's awesomeness?
In the weeks leading up to the community build, the "big tonka toys for grown-ups" will arrive and complete heavy bulk work. Then the fun begins: community build day!
Town volunteers arrive on the morning of build day, armed with wheelbarrows and shovels and muscle. Supervisors will set up various stations, while volunteers cycle through to help with all aspects. You'll be sanding rough edges of logs, moving mulch, painting the community mural, planting flowers and assisting in the final details to bring your new community destination to life!
Adam says that at the end of the day, the dedicated remaining volunteers usually end up working together to complete a task, such as laying sod. Then, tired and content, everyone can collectively sit back and take a satisfied look at their accomplishment.
"I always make it clear that this is meaningful work. You'll be able to look at this park and say, 'I did that.'"
After the playground has been inspected for CSA (Canadian Standards Association) compliance, it can officially open to the public!
The winning community must be able to start this process by July 1, 2012.
Exciting, isn't it!