Hello Playground Fan!!

Our first meeting for 2009  is 7 pm Friday, April 3rd at the McKinley Community Center.

Please try to come.  Everyone and anyone is encouraged to attend. We need people that are motivated to help improve our community facilities.  There are lots of ways to help.

On the agenda for this meeting:

  • projects to finish – basketball court and pea gravel from last summer
  • fundraising and grant plans
  • new projects for this summer (naturalscape, swingset bay, etc)
  • the pancake fundraiser event planned for May 16

If you have anything you’d like to add to the agenda please email David or Martha at mckinleyplayground@gmail.com

We hope you can make the meeting!  And make sure to mark the Pancake Fundraiser Event (Saturday May 16th) on your calendar – we’re going to need lots of help.

**Check out the proposed playground layout drawing posted below!


This is the proposed layout for the new McKinley Village Playground.


In the next six months we will be conducting local fund-raising events, seeking grant moneys and contributions for the playground. We need help with any of the following tasks:

  • finding grants & writing grants
  • seeking material donations for playground components
  • leading or helping organize a fundraising event this winter
  • helping to design the natural playscape components

Come help us create a healthy creative playspace for community members of all ages.

McKinley Village Playground Planning Meeting

Friday November 7 at 7:00 PM

McKinley Community Center

Everyone interested in improving and expanding our local playground is welcome. Come to learn more and to share your ideas.

This is a volunteer effort and we need your help!

Goals for this meeting:

1) Review what we have accomplished

2) Revisit what we would like to do next

3) Plan fundraising for 2008-2009

For more information contact David and Martha Tomeo at 683-2788 or mckinleyplayground@gmail.com

If you haven’t been by the playground lately, you’re missing a lot of fun.  Our second load of pea gravel has been delivered. A big thanks to the awesome volunteers that helped spread the first pile! We can definitely used more of your help spreading the pea gravel.

Addison points out that the pile missed its mark!

Addison points out that the pile missed its mark!

Unfortunately Several Things Have Gone Missing From the Playground!

Sometime between Saturday, August 23rd and Friday, August 29th three rolls of lawn edging and a large bag of stakes were taken from the playground area. This is what the lawn edging looks like:

Also taken from the playground project was a eight foot 2×6 form board from the basketball court.

Please help us find these by telling everyone you know about this.  The value of these materials is about $75, which is a lot for our little project. And we were hoping to get it all installed now before the ground freezes up.

Another gathering of hardy volunteers happened this weekend!   David Tomeo, Cass Ray and Steve Anastasia constructed timber walls around the playground.  With the help of the Sarah Marshall, Martha Tomeo, Ian and Isaac Van Horn, Emma & Will Tomeo, and Olivia Ellis the fabric was laid and we began to backfill on the new wall.  Thanks to all for your help!

The first load of pea gravel was dumped into our new area on Saturday and its apparent that the dump truck couldn’t toss the pea gravel back very far into our play area.  We don’t want heavy equipment to tear up the tundra around the playground therefore we need your help coaxing the pea gravel to the back corners of this play area.

So…if anyone has some free time please dive in and help move the pea gravel towards the back.  Its fun!  Its great exercise! Its fairly self-explanatory! For you water haulers, it could be a great way to pass the time while your tank fills.

Many hands and big machines make for light work!

    On Friday the 15th of August many community members joined in a grand ole’ work party at the community center. We broke ground around the existing playground to make room for a thick cushioning layer of pea gravel. At the same time creating a very fun ‘earth mound’ that the kids got to test out right away (thumbs up all around). We hauled many large loads of brush away, and we scrubbed clean the giant tires. We also did a lot of hard work preparing for the 40×40 foot concrete slab for our basketball court.
Steve & the big toy


A big thanks go to Steve Jones and his big machines for all his time, as well as Bill Rodwell for the many many hours of prep and hard work on the project.



Mmm local carrots!

Thanks to 229 Parks Restaurant, Martha Tomeo, & Sarah Marshall for bringing refreshments.


Thanks to Lynn Vraspir for the truck & trailer for hauling away brush.


The Man -Bill Rodwell
    Thanks to Tom Farbo, Bill Rodwell, Clay Walker, Mark Menke & Rock-n-Roll Construction for loaning a myriad of much needed tools.


    Thanks to Gordon Carlson for donating a load of gravel.


The lil' crew

Thanks to our work crew: Land Cole & Oliver, Elizabeth Hooge & Torin & Lily, Steve Jones, Sarah Marshall & Isaac & Ian, Val Raisis & D, Bill & Jodie Rodwell, David & Martha Tomeo & Emma & Will, Chuck Tomkiewicz & Riley, Ashlea Vilello, Lynn Vraspir & Sasha

We need your help this Friday (August 15th) at the McKinley Park Community Center for a grand ‘ole community work party!

The work party will start at 10am and wrap up by late afternoon. Earlier this summer we received a Denali Borough Matching Grant to improve and expand the recreation area at our community center… now it’s time to use those funds to make things happen before winter arrives!

We’ve got lots happening, here are some of the projects that need work – we have something for everyone:

* setting the form boards for the Basketball court (compacting,
leveling, driving stakes, shoveling, etc)
* hand-digging around the existing playstructure (assisting the backhoe)
* cleaning the monster truck tires
* hauling brush & cutting more brush
* sanding and painting

Bring your work gloves and shovels.
Kids are welcome! Bring your toy shovels & trucks!
Refreshments will be provided courtesy of 229 Parks Restaurant & Tavern.

Please, please come help out. Bring a friend, visiting family… but leave pets at home.
Please RSVP by Wednesday evening, Aug. 13 so we can have an organized plan and we will make the best use of your time and energy! If you can’t make this date but are interested in helping out, please let us know… we could still use your help with the upcoming concrete pour and other tasks.

For more information, and to RSVP, please contact David & Martha Tomeo 683-2788 or paddlers@mtaonline.net

As of last week the future basketball court began to take shape (a flat square kind of shape).  Steve Jones with his big steam shovel (ok, diesel) made quick work of leveling the area.  Bill Rodwell thoroughly impressed the kids at Friday’s playgroup with the loud compactor (see photo below) that he muscled around the future court.

Next some stable ground fill may be brought in and Bill might even make a return visit to playgroup with the compactor to ready the area for the concrete slab.

Stay tuned… in the next few weeks we plan to have a GRAND OLE WORK PARTY at the playground.  Help will be needed for setting up the concrete form boards, scrubbing/cleaning the giant tires, hand digging out around the old playground structure, cutting brush, and more.

Can anyone say \'caffeine\'?

With the help of 62 Runners, Bikers and Walkers the Moose Scat Scoot was a tremendous success and raised $2760 for the McKinley Village Playground Project!

The Biker Babes!

Thank you to all of the participants that brought in pledge and entry fee money.

Thank you to all of the businesses that donated prizes to the event.

Dedicated Water Girl!

A special thanks to Aramark, Patty Burns, her crew, and all of the volunteers for organizing this fun and healthy event.

The Finish Line Cheer Leaders!

With these funds we are now much closer to getting some new playground equipment for the children of our community. Thank you everybody!

Because everybody should have a place to play!

A web space to help us improve and expand the playground and recreation area at the McKinley Community Center in Denali Park, AK.


The new swings are hung!
Spiral slide is rebuilt!
The time capsule was buried!
There is 2nd basketball hoop!
The new playstructure is up!

This project is partially funded by the citizens of the Denali Borough.