If you’ve wandered past Anvil City Square in the last few days, you may have noticed some new orange fencing.
“We need the area to remain free of foot traffic and snowmachines and four-wheelers and all the things that tend to be on it during the winter-time, to let the grass seed germinate in order to ensure a lush carpet of grass for the city to enjoy,” explained Jeremy Master with the Department of Parks and Recreation in Nome, which is in charge of the lawn-reseeding that will keep the area in front of Old St. Joe’s closed off through the winter and into next spring.
The re-seeding is the first part in a two-phased project, and the Parks and Rec Department is readying for a drastic expansion of the playground in Anvil City Square. The area will expand to 120 by 90 feet, more than twice its current size, all of which will be covered by a new floor material made from a “recycled shredded rubber mulch.”
Also, the number of playground components, the technical term for things like seesaws and swing sets, will go up to 13. And not just any components, either.
“This is the primary component,” Master explained over computer-generated diagrams of a junglegym. “This thing has tons of different play elements on it, every inch of this is something cool—you know this little thing has a crawl tube each—this little panel has a bunch of things on it.”
Materials for the playground should arrive in mid-August, which is when Parks and Rec hopes to start installing everything. Master designed much of the playground himself, along with an Oregon company that builds the actual materials. It was one of more fun work tasks he has done, but he said the project is about more than that.
“It’s been proven that active play is beneficial to the cognitive, physical, and social development of all children. And on top of that it’s a great place to bring families together and to enjoy the outdoors.”
Closing off the lawn section is less about early education than beautification, something Nome’s common council decided was important for fostering civic pride when they approved the reseeding and closure.
The Parks and Rec Department is hoping the lawn will seed and the fencing can come off next year.