Volunteers build new playground at Gassaway Park in Tyler

Volunteers build new playground at Gassaway Park in Tyler

TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - Volunteers in Tyler spent their Saturday building a new playground for kids in their community.

From nine this morning, until three this afternoon was all it took.

The new playground is at Gassaway Park in Northwest Tyler — off Martha St.

In June, the city of Tyler was awarded a grant through ‘KaBoom!’, a nonprofit which provides play activities for kids across the country.

“About eight weeks ago, I came out and met with the kids in the community,” said Hunter Stevens, the project manager for the park project with ‘KaBoom!’. “We had them draw their dream playground and came together as adults and said we have great ideas here what can we do to meet what the kids want with what we can offer and this is what you see, what we were able to come up with.”

Volunteers from all over the community came together today to make those kids’ playground goals a reality.

“This community really rocked it,” said Stevens. “We had at least 100 people show up that registered the day of... so we had a total of 266 people.”

“People all over the community have volunteered,” said LeAnne Robinette, senior manager of the office of Parks, Recreation, and Tourism for the city of Tyler. “We have organizations here, colleges here, families that just wanted to volunteer their time.”

Those who volunteered said they felt it was important for them to give back.

“I think it’s important because it’s great to give back to the community you go to school at,” said Viviana Faz, a TJC student, and volunteer. “It’s great to put something that could be here a lifetime.”

“What makes Tyler so great is that we have so many people that just care about our community and they show up every time we need them,” said Robinette. “It’s a feel-good moment for everyone here.”

The previous playground at the park was at the bottom of the hill. A representative from Blue Cross Blue Shield at the event today said the new playground at the top of the hill provides a safer play environment for kids, where their parents can watch them.

The playground will officially be open to the public on Tuesday.

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