Community comes together for Sorrows playground build

About 80 volunteers worked throughout a drizzly day August 13 to transform an aging playground at Our Lady of Sorrows School, located on Raphael Road in Farmington.

Our Lady of Sorrows
Volunteers work to build the new Our Lady of Sorrows School playground. (contributed photo)

“It was an incredible showing,” said Liz Flynn, president of the K-8 school’s Parent Teacher Guild (PTG). She added that volunteers included parishioners who don’t have children in school, led by the Knights of Columbus. “We felt so supported.”

Our Lady of Sorrows
The innovative playground includes equipment suitable for kids through eighth grade. (contributed photo)

The project started several years ago, when several PTG members realized the playground had “come to the end of its useful life,” Flynn said. In addition to dated equipment, part of the area suffered from water problems. Parents started fundraising, and this year, met their $175,000 goal. They also saved about $30,000 by doing much of the work themselves.

Our Lady of Sorrows
Parents and church community members without children worked on the playground. (contributed photo)

While the old playground only worked for students in 4th grade or younger, the scope of the new equipment ranges through eighth grade, Flynn said. Pieces are much more innovative and tactile.

“The school population is way back up in numbers and continues to grow,” Flynn said. “We needed bigger equipment, we needed more kids to be able to play in the same square footage…I think the kids are really going to enjoy that they can all play together.”

Kids will be able to play on the new structure September 6. A ribbon cutting will be held as part of the school day on September 9, with a religious dedication and outdoor mass the Sunday before.