14 May Smith Memorial Playground Updated
Continued from last week…
When the decision was made to fund raise and renovate Smith Memorial Playground, the foundation hired local playground designer and early childhood expert, Betsy Ceasar. Betsy has been involved in playground design and at the forefront of safety for over 30 years. Her goal was to create a completely accessible environment that restored Smith to its original grandeur, and to use innovative and durable materials to serve the generations to come.
Local Dynamo representative Glenn Barrie of Camellian Playscapes was contacted by Betsy Ceasar in an effort to assist with providing safe and innovative playground games. Out of this original meeting, it was decided that the Apollo series of rotating games and the Biggo Flyers would be games that would help to re-launch the Smith Memorial Playground. In 2006, the first phase was completed and a Full Sized Apollo and a Biggo Duo were installed in the areas for older children. The second phase was completed at the start of the Summer of 2009 and a Mini Apollo was added to the tot area.
While there are many suppliers of playground equipment represented in the entire playground, Smith Executive Director Hope Zoss reports that the Apollos and the Biggo are tremendously popular with the children. The Full Sized Apollo has even been featured in the Philadelphia Inquirer, the major newspaper in the City, and has been adopted by the Playhouse as a part of their letterhead logo. There is talk of possibly adding another Biggo to the tot area, but for now, the Smith Memorial Playground has resumed its rightful place as the best playground in the City of Philadelphia.