Universally accessible playground at Proehlific Park now open
The universally accessible playground was built as a partnership between Oosterhouse’s nonprofit Carter’s Kids and Proehl’s nonprofit The P.O.W.E.R. of Play
Greensboro, N.C. – Greensboro’s first all-inclusive playground, built as a partnership between Trading Spaces star Carter Oosterhouse and his nonprofit Carter’s Kids and 17-year NFL star Ricky Proehl and his charity The P.O.W.E.R. of Play, has officially opened at Proehlific Park. The ribbon-cutting ceremony, held July 18 at 11 a.m., was attended by Oosterhouse, Proehl, Greensboro Mayor Nancy Vaughan, community members and children.
The universally accessible playground for kids ages 5-12 was built last week at Proehlific Park (4517 Jessup Grove Rd., in Greensboro), a premier sports complex and fitness center built, owned and managed by Proehl. Custom designed to engage and accommodate children of all abilities, the wheelchair-accessible space includes the most popular elements of play — including spinning, sliding, climbing, balancing, brachiating and imaginative play.
Special features include two slide transfers where children can easily move from their mobility devices to go down the slide; gradual levels of play, including vertical, lateral and angled climbing to encourage longer activity experiences; two types of spinning – seated and standing – on a Merry-Go-All that enables children to spin themselves in a fully supported seat with their friends; and benches and shade areas for children to rest and have alone time if needed.
The new playground addresses the vital need for recreational spaces where children with special needs feel welcome and can engage in play without barriers. There are many forms of special needs, including some that cannot be seen. These can include children with cognitive, sensory, social, physical and psychological challenges as well as those with chronic health conditions.
Oosterhouse and Proehl hope is that the playground will serve as a model for future all-inclusive playgrounds they’d like to build in North Carolina so that all children can enjoy the many benefits of unstructured playtime, including exercise, learning, development and social interaction. Those interested in sponsoring or learning more about future all-inclusive playground projects can contact Quay Chilcott at firstname.lastname@example.org. Sponsors for the Greensboro playground include the Petty Family Foundation, DH Griffin, KFC and Proehlific Park.