Our first project was the construction of Fort Frankfort, a children's park which is situated within Commissioner's Park located at Laraway Road and S. 80th Ave. To this day, the fort undergoes yearly maintenance work in May, with the help from local youth and adult volunteers. This annual care is behind the fact that the fort is still in a wonderful condition since it was built in 1997!
With support of donors and through the annual fund raisers, the pump track was installed. money to order the track!. Money is still needed to install a path from the Old Plank Trail to the track, money for benches, signs and miscellaneous items. You can help raise money by attending the 2nd Annual Pours for Parks Craft Beer Tasting on October 20th or by making a donation.
Read More about the pump track.
With support of donors, the Foundation was able to raise money to repurpose the skate park pad into three pickle ball courts. The project was finished in 2020, with the courts being very busy ever since.
Pickleball is a paddleball sport, similar to a racquet sport that combines elements of badminton, table tennis, and tennis and can be played by two or four players.
The Foundation purchased and installed three fitness equipment pieces at Michelle Bingham Memorial Park the equipment is adjacent to Old Plank Trail which allows for trail users to incorporate the equipment into their workouts.
OP has gone Ga-ga! If you're not familiar, Ga-ga is a variant of dodgeball. The game combines dodging, striking, running and jumping with the object of hitting opponents with a ball below the knee while avoiding being hit. It can be played by groups of individual players, teams and in one-on-one matches. Operation Playground purchased the Ga-ga pit and had it installed just in time for summer! In the picture below, you'll see some youngsters in day camp learning how to play.
Operation Playground was proud to fund the construction of new 3-on-3 basketball courts located in Main Park. The ribbon-cutting took place May 17, 2014, at 9:30 am followed by 3-on-3 tournaments. More than 50 people attended, including children enrolled in local youth basketball programs.
"This is the second year in a row we have made a donation and plan to keep the tradition going" said Simmons. "100% of Operation Playground's fundraising efforts go directly back into the community to improve and enhance Frankfort parks and programs." Tami Pareti, Recreation Specialist, stated, "the donation comes at a good time as many of our athletes will be participating in the upcoming Special Olympic State Basketball Tournaments in Bloomington and the donation will help cover upcoming costs."
In the fall of 2012, Operation Playground arranged the purchase of 100 trees from Possibility Place Nursery and donated them to the Frankfort Park District. In collaboration with the Park District, two planting dates were scheduled to get all the trees planted, Oct. 13, 2012 and Nov 3, 2012. Trees were planted in Commissioners, Main, Michele Bingham and Janssen Parks. Volunteers from Operation Playground, the Park District, Frankfort Boy Scout Troop #000, the Lincolnway Environmental Action Club and the National Honor Society helped with the plantings.
Pictured above are Phil Simmons, President, Operation Playground; Keith Wallace, Executive Director, Lincolnway Special Recreation Association; student athlete Allison Leehaug accepting the check; and Tami Pareti, Recreation Specialist, Lincolnway Special Recreation Association.