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McKinley Park Playground Open Again

Jace Deboo and younger brother Gavin at McKinley Park's playground re-opening July 31, 2013.


Hundreds of children streamed into Sacramento’s brand new McKinley Park playground…almost a year to the day after the old playground burned down.  

With an impersonator of President William McKinley assisting, two hundred children counted down from ten before bursting through a McKinley Park banner and into the new playground.  

The children ran in fifty different directions, many not knowing what to climb on first.  But Jace Deboo and his little brother, Gavin knew exactly where they were headed –the new train.

Gavin shouted, "All aboard!" while older brother congratulated him on a job well done.

As the kids ran from the train to the bridge to the giant clubhouse, parents, like Mike Fahn, tried to keep track. Fahn was one of hundreds of volunteers who helped with construction around the park.

“I came out thinking I would work a couple hours just to say I did it.  The next thing you know, it’s six hours in 105 or 10.  And, I mean, we took it really serious.  We said, ‘We’re not leaving until we get four sections and the first section took us three hours," he laughed.       

With volunteer labor, donations, neighborhood fundraisers, city funds and insurance money, the new park turned into a million-and-a-half dollar project. 

Sadie Bauer is eleven and lives a block away.  For her, the new playground provides a reason to come back.  

"I came here a lot, but then it kind of got old because I grew up at the old playground," she said.  "I think I’ll probably spend a lot of time here since it’s new and big and cool.”

The ideas of a thousand school children were considered by the designers of the park.  The city says it will go back to those kids to get their reactions to the new McKinley Park playground.

Bob Moffitt

Sacramento Region Reporter

Bob reports on all things northern California and Nevada. His coverage of police technology, local athletes, and the environment has won a regional Associated Press and several Edward R. Murrow awards.   Read Full Bio 

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