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On Aug. 20 Juneau was designated a Playful City USA. In celebration of the Kaboom! Playful City USA designation, the City and Borough of Juneau Parks & Recreation Department celebrated a Day of Play on Sept. 25.
The Day of Play extravaganza attracted more than 2,000 visitations to Parks and Recreation facilities. Recreators from throughout Juneau participated in a suite of free activities - at the Zach Gordon Youth Center, the Juneau-Douglas City Museum, Augustus Brown Pool, Treadwell Ice Arena, Jumbo Gym, Project Playground at Twin Lakes, Auke Lake Trail and Savikko Park.
I wish to thank the magnificent Parks & Recreation team and volunteers that organized and participated in the day's activities. Special thanks to Kevin (and Suzanne) Brady, Parks & Landscape Superintendent; Sheila (and Jeff ) Fisher, Recreation Superintendent; Dora, Michele and RJ Joven, Myiia Whistler, Dave Pusich, Kristi West, Karin Richard-Jacobi, Jane Lindsey, Greg Smith, Tor Wallen, Allison Sharpe, Shiloh Valle, Matt Sperber, Russell Gilchrist, Mindy Meyers, Alyssa McLain, Amanda Chisholm, Dan Beason, Debra Ruhnke, Clare Saint Gabriel, Rhiannon Jensen, Jess Brown, Crandall Mark, Donnyel Burras, Larry Blatnick, Mike Brna, Lauren Anderson, Thomas McKenzie, Jessie Beck, volunteers George Schaaf and Mike Krill of Trail Mix; Jeff Brown/KTOO and his wonderful balloon art; Sharon Gaiptman/KINY; Catherine Pusich, Melanie Coleman and Kate Walters of Friends of Project Playground, Jennifer Vernon (UAS), Steve Potter, Alex Calloway, Travis Godfrey, Evan Gross, Lance Ibesate, Ryan Kelly, Jazz King, Jackson Lehnhart, Jeffrey Pusich, Taylor Swofford, Tony Yada and KaBoom!
Food, beverages and prizes were donated by Bob Stevens of Northern Sales, Heritage Coffee, the Lions Club and the Zach Gordon Teen Club. Thank you so much for your generous support!
Playful City USA is a national recognition program honoring cities and towns that prioritize play and ensure that children are healthy by providing the time and space for play. KaBoom!, a national non profit dedicated to play, recognized 118 cities across the country as Playful USA communities, including Juneau - Alaska's first. According to KaBoom! each of the Playful City USA communities demonstrated creative commitments to the cause of play. "These Playful City USA communities serve as beacons for the rest of our nation that an investment in children is an investment in our future."
We are so fortunate to live in such a wonderful community that loves to play! Thank you for your participation. The Day of Play was a remarkable community effort that will be repeated next September.
Come Out and Play!
Director, Parks & Recreation
City and Borough of Juneau