Phase I complete of new playground in Woodsdale


A fundraising project is underway to improve a playground in Woodsdale.

Phase I of the project – landscaping and fencing -- is completed. Now, more funds are being raised by parents, teachers and the community.

Plans call for an outdoor learning center that will be ADA compliant for all kids, basketball courts, and much more.

"West Virginia leads the nation in obesity, and we want to make sure we are offering students opportunities in exercise for their health and well-being at school,” said Ashlea Minch, principal, Woodsdale Elementary School.

The playground will be a shared agreement with the city of Wheeling, meaning the entire community can use it when students are not.

The parent-teacher organization has already raised around $130,000 and two local businesses (Valley Fence and Four Seasons Landscaping) helped complete Phase I.

The project is estimated around $225,000. Several fundraisers are scheduled. Students were asked early on what they wanted.

"It ranged from a rock climbing wall to a waterslide, to swings, and swings are a liability with the concrete that we have now. So a lot of our costs is actually for rubber surfacing,” Minch said.

Parents and school leaders say they wanted to really combat some of the issues West Virginia faces like obesity, drug addiction, unemployment and poverty by giving kids something to do in the neighborhood.

They say this is just a big start.

"It also helps with the social aspect, figuring things out with friends how to climb this rock wall,” Minch said.

A steak fry is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 21 at Hess Shelter at Oglebay Park.

Tickets are available online, through PayPal or at the school.

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