Linn County Conservation will create an outdoor play area made entirely out of natural materials. The playscape, to be located at Linn County’s Wickiup Hill Learning Center, will encourage children to literally “get in touch with nature.”
Staff at Wickiup Hill Learning Center have been hoping to create a playscape for many years and are thrilled to have ITC donate in helping jumpstart the project, according to Dennis Goemaat, Linn County Conservation Deputy Director. The electric transmission company has pledged $25,000 toward the project.
“Linn County Conservation has worked hard to make outdoor areas accessible to residents,” Goemaat said. “We have talked about ongoing investments in Wickiup Hill that would further encourage kids to interact with nature. When ITC approached us to support an opportunity, this was a natural fit, so to speak.”
“This area will allow kids to interact with natural items to build, climb, and play,” says Sarah Wendt, Education Specialist at Wickiup Hill. “It is our desire that this area spark true creativity and innovation, and lead to a deep love of the outdoors.” The playscape will be inclusive, and allow for children of all ages and abilities to interact and experience the natural world. Sand, logs, boulders, tree cookies, and sticks are just a sampling of the materials used for nature playscape equipment.
Linn County Conservation hired Abundant Playscapes, Inc. from Iowa City to design the area, which is slated to be completed by early Summer 2016. As part of the design process, Linn County Conservation is hosting input sessions, at which residents can experiment with natural play materials and offer their suggestions on what would make a fun and interesting playscape.
The first series of sessions have been taking place at Wickiup Hill, located at 10260 Morris Hills Rd, Toddville, Iowa. More sessions are scheduled at the following dates and times:
CHILDREN INPUT SESSIONS AT WICKIUP HILL:
Wednesday, August 19, 10-11 a.m. as part of the Science with Squirts program
Saturday, October 10, 10 a.m. -12 p.m. as part of Fall Fest.
COMMUNITY INPUT SESSIONS AT WICKIUP HILL:
Saturday, August 22, 10a.m. -12p.m.
Thursday, September 10, 6:30p.m. - 7:30p.m.
“ITC is proud of our ongoing partnership with the staff and volunteers at Linn County and Linn County Conservation,” said ITC Local Government and Community Affairs Area Manager Angela Jordan. “This project is a great fit with ITC’s commitment to the environment as a key part of our both long-range planning and day-to-day operations. This will be a great natural play area, and we encourage the community to add their input to making it the best community benefit it can be.”