Butterfield Playground Committee to buy accessible merry-go-round, raise more money

  • Ten Spin, which Miracle Recreation describes as “an inclusive freestanding product that allows children of all abilities to play together.” The Butterfield Playground Committee agreed Monday night to buy one. Contributed photo

  • Liberty Swing, an Australian-made device, was originally a consideration by the Orange Butterfield Playground committee as an option for the playground but changed their mind when they saw the price tag of over $15,000. Contributed photo

  • A “Sway Fun” from Landscape Structures has room for two wheelchairs, plus two large benches for other passenger. Contributed photo

  • The Butterfield Park Playground as it appeared Monday, waiting for warmer weather so area kids can make use of the new equipment. Daily News Staff/Jared Robinson

Staff Writer
Wednesday, February 14, 2018

ORANGE — The Butterfield Park Playground Committee plans to use its remaining state funding for a type of merry-go-round that accommodates wheelchairs. The committee also plans to begin fundraising for a wheelchair-accessible swing.

In 2016, the state matched a $21,000 town appropriation with a $50,000 grant for rehabilitation of Butterfield Park. After replacing all of the equipment that was broken or no longer considered safe by modern codes, the committee is left with about $4,100 that must be spent by the end of the fiscal year. Otherwise it is forfeited.

Committee members contacted various vendors about equipment prices, reaching out to area businesses and philanthropic organizations for fundraising, and got a quote for a fence repair. Committee Chairman Wally Herk also said he would reach out to resident Jean Sinclair, who had contacted him previously about the committee acquiring a wheelchair-accessible item for the park.

Town Community Development Administrator Adrienne Menges said she had received a quote for $3,200 to repair the sagging fence, which the committee felt was a little high. Instead, Herk suggested the committee purchase locally the materials needed themselves, and form a work crew to do the repair. The remaining committee members favored this idea as well.

Committee member John Waters reached out to the two vendors the committee had previously worked with, and neither said they have a wheelchair-accessible swing, but they pointed him to the Liberty Swing. Waters looked into the Liberty Swing and presented his findings, noting the sticker shock of being more than $15,000, plus the cost of freight to ship the item from Australia and exchange rate fluctuations that could drive the cost up even more.

Sinclair was present for a meeting Monday night and suggested the committee might consider the purchase of a “Sway Fun,” a type of swing that could accommodate two wheelchairs plus two large benches for other passengers, made by a company from Missouri, and offered to contact the company for a quote.

Waters said the committee has received an anonymous donation of $1,000, but has been earmarked to only be used to offset the cost of a Ten Spin, a type of ADA-compliant merry-go-round that can fit up to 10 children.

Considering the options and the nearing deadline, Herk moved that the remaining money, minus the $1,000 donation, be used to purchase a Ten Spin from Miracle Recreation, leaving about $1,400 for repair work around the park.


Herk also proposed that the committee begin fundraising for a Sway Fun.

Herk has already reached out to the Pioneer Junior Women’s Club, which agreed to donate a portion of the proceeds from a meat raffle being held on March 24 at 7 p.m., at the Orange Legion on Daniel Shays Highway (Route 202). The club is also planning to hold a tin can auction and is seeking prize donations for that table.

Sinclair said she will also set up a 120 Club raffle to help raise money.

Menges said that those who want to make a direct donation to the Butterfield Playground Committee can drop off a check at Town Hall on Prospect Street in the community development office made out to the Town of Orange, with “Butterfield Playground” in the memo line.

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