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Discovery Playground

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Discovery Playground & Sensory Garden
Fundraising Efforts:
$317,000+
Playground Location: Les Gove Park, Auburn
Size: 32,000 sq. ft.

Often, children with disabilities are left to sit and watch their able-bodied friends and siblings play. Instead, imagine all children playing side-by-side in a fully accessible and sensory-rich playground environment. That is the vision for Auburn's barrier-free playground. Barrier-free playgrounds delight children of all abilities while providing a place where compassion and acceptance flourish. The sensory garden is an integrated system of spaces devoted to the five senses: see, hear, touch, taste and smell.

The City of Auburn has a fantastic park and recreation system with a variety of play equipment, spray pools, fields, and courts; however it was the vision to add to these amenities and build a unique barrier-free playground that is accessible to all. In conjunction with the former non-profit group, Northwest Parks Foundation, the City of Auburn raised over $317,000 for a barrier-free playground in Les Gove Park. Donations were received by individuals, corporations, granting agencies, foundations, and service clubs.

The new playground opened June 25, 2010.

Check out the Discovery Playground on YouTubeExternal link

Barrier Free Playground Features

  • Universally accessible pathways and surfacing
  • Play structures configured to support all levels of development
  • Ramps, bridges, and transfer stations - allowing every child to reach the highest play deck
  • Elevated sand tables, interactive walls, activity panels, and auditory elements where children of all abilities can play together
  • Cozy spots where everyone can gather
  • Swings and bouncers with back support
  • Sensory-rich and tactile surfaces and activities that stimulate the imagination
  • Equipment that provides diverse play opportunities for all, including tunnels, waist-level play areas, and other barrier-free options

Community Partners

Playground Leadership Circle ($20,000+)

  • Community Development Block Grant Funds
  • King County Parks
  • Master's Stoneworks Artist Andre Pomeroy

Playground Friend ($7,500-$12,499)

  • Rotary Club of Auburn
  • Employee Recycling Program
  • Quality Fence Builders, Inc.
  • White River Fencing

Playground Buddy ($2,500-$7,499)

  • Lafarge North America
  • Lloyd Enterprises Inc.
  • ICON Materials
  • Muckleshoot Indian Tribe
  • Trillium Employment Services
  • Oldcastle Precast/Utility Vault
  • Miller Fabrication Inc.
  • City of Auburn Employees 2009 Giving Campaign
  • Waste Management
  • Auburn Youth Council
  • Auburn Noon Lions Club
  • MultiCare Health Systems
  • Miles Sand and Gravel
  • Iddings Sand and Gravel-Topsoil

Playground Pal ($500-$2,499)

  • AHBL
  • Buckley Recycle Center
  • K & A Landscape Supply
  • Soroptimist International of Auburn
  • Detlef Schrempf Foundation
  • Kip and Julie Herren
  • Dan and Lynn Norman
  • Sound Turf Farm
  • Wilkeson Sandstone Quarry L.L.C.
  • AA Asphalt
  • 410 Quarry
  • Chinook Elementary ASB
  • Angie Norman
  • Auburn Police Guild
  • Auburn Police Officers Association
  • Kiwanis Club of Auburn
  • Lakeland Hills Elementary. Student Council
  • Nelson's Jewelry
  • Roger Thordarson and Marcia Hoover
  • Sterling Savings Bank
  • Trish Borden
  • WA State Law Enforcement Association

Playground Companion ($100-499)

  • Linda Cowan
  • Optimist Club of Auburn
  • Susan Benedict - Fitchett, Benedict & Clark
  • Ferguson Plumbing
  • Arthur Jacobsen Elementary National Honor Society
  • Auburn VFW Post 1741
  • Rich and Kay Wagner
  • Sue Singer
  • Ilene Huston
  • HD Fowler
  • Caitlyn & Rebecca Jones
  • University of Washington Student Occupational Therapy Association

Playmate ($99 & under)

  • Peter B. Lewis
  • Nancy Backus
  • Virginia Haugen
  • Vicki Gilthvedt
  • Laura Higdon
  • John Webley
  • Len & Linda Elliott
  • David A. Clark Architects
  • Byron Hiller, Coldwell Banker Commercial
  • Gildo Rey Elementary
  • Kaleidoscope Childcare Center
  • L'Tanya Terrell Jones
  • Cari Manry