Over the past few years, Equal Access Park, a playground created for all children with all capabilities, in Idaho Falls has seen some vandalism, but over the last couple of weeks local businesses, community members, parents, and friends have come together to make this park what it once was, again.
Musical Instruments, big fish, slides, and kids having a blast in a fun and safe environment are the real goals of these volunteers. Friday and Saturday afternoons this week, Encompass Home Health and Hospice is providing lunch for all the volunteers who are giving their time to paint and clean up this playground through a project called IGNITE.
"It's a great project and it's a wonderful park. The fact that it was vandalized, I think the community just needs to be aware that we all can play a part in preserving what is important in our community," said Sandy Herrera, the Hospice Director with Encompass.
Many of the parents I spoke to say this place is much more than just a regular playground.
"Well, my daughter has special needs and finding a park that fits our needs right here in Idaho Falls is important to us. My daughter is able to use the swings, and objects that can help her balance, and it makes it possible for her to play like everyone else," said Tami McCain, a parent enjoying the park with her kids.
"We came after a couple days when it was trashed. My husband told me he saw it on the news and there was graffiti, but they fixed it right away. I think the community volunteers are doing great, it's awesome that people are coming out and doing something about it," said Mel Edmondson, a mom playing with her kids at Equal Access Park.
This Equal Access park has been around for years and volunteers hope it will be around for many more to come in great condition.
"Thanks to all the volunteers from Encompass, YMCA, Team INL, to the anonymous people who just showed up; it is much appreciated and we have a great community," added Herrera.
"Just come out, support us, and I hope to see a lot people out here as well," said Reva Nickelson, a Volunteer with INL.
If you would like to volunteer, they are hosting another event starting tomorrow morning at 10:00. They will begin with painting, so if you do go and you want to bring some extra paint brushes or just yourself they say it will be much appreciated. The playground is in Tautphaus park near shelter two.