Fitness Park comes together on Make a Difference Day

The outdoor fitness park at DeFrees Playground is 99 percent done.

Volunteers in Warren pitched in on Saturday to put the finishing touches on the outdoor fitness park as part of Make a Difference Day, a national day of volunteerism that is a joint effort by USA Weekend magazine and Points of Light.

“Right now I’d say its 99 percent done,” Heidi Ekey, project organizer, said, “The one percent is the poured rubber which can’t be done until spring…and the city has to determine what they consider approved.”

The project has been championed by the Community Mobilization Initiative, a conglomeration of representatives from many local corporations.

The park was originally proposed in March and has been before Warren’s Parks and Recreation Commission and Warren City Council on several occasions in recent months.

Almost all of the preliminary work has been completed. Earlier this week workers with Joe Gassner Contracting installed the equipment, and Huber Blacktop Company put down the blacktop.

All that is needed now is a poured rubber surface similar to what is located at the Crescent Park playground and the final approval from the city.

While the group has raised money to cover the cost of the equipment, some funding is still needed to complete the project.

“We will need donations to come in for the poured-in-place rubber ground cover and installation of the walkway,” said Mary Hagan-Double, an organizer for the fitness park. “We planned on pushing the walkway installation to the spring because of temperature requirements during installation. Many grants we are applying for also have rolling timelines that stretched passed our deadline. So we are actively seeking about $30,000.”

The Initiative is holding another fundraisers in the coming weeks to help raise funds with a pancake breakfast at Applebee’s on the morning of Nov. 16.