UPES Community Playground
"Good morning and welcome to the ribbon cutting ceremony for the new Union Pleasant Community Playground. We are thrilled to have you here to share this momentous occasion with us. I am Caroline Haffey and this is Amy Nyhart. We are co-chairpersons for the playground committee along with Mr. Tim Nyhart. At this time, we would like to introduce the 7 core members of our committee. Although few in number, each member has contributed to the success of this endeavor. A personal and sincere thank you goes out to Andy Smith, Beth Walters, Laura Eye, Patricia McGee, Mindy Carlson, Amy Takacs, and Greg Wichlacz for three years of hard work and dedication.
On May 5, 2005, the first meeting of the Union Pleasant Playground Fund was held. Little did we know then the adventure that the next three years would hold. The committee weathered many ups and downs; but always stayed focused on our one goal- to create an amazing play environment for the children of UPES and the
Throughout the next 36 months, we asked parents, staff and the surrounding community to support our various fundraising events, including the kick-off walk-a-thon, spirit wear sales, Sabres Night, and Winterfest, not to mention numerous chicken barbecues and many smaller events. The support we received was tremendous and we were well on our way. Many generous donations of $1,000 or more were received from the Russo Family Charitable Foundation, John & Mary’s, Pegasus Restaurant, Chubb and Son Inc, Titi and Blaise and two anonymous donors. We also applied for and were awarded 2 grants. One from Assemblyman Jack Quinn Jr. in the amount of $5,000 and the second in the amount of $10,000 from Senator William Stachowski. Finally, after three years of hard work we had realized our goal.
The committee had the pleasure of working with Mr. Ben Frasier, from Parkitects, the local representative for Landscape Structures. Ben listened to our ideas and the needs of the children at UPES and designed a truly awesome and challenging play experience for our children.
The community build days were a true testament to the power of community. Last Thursday and Friday the site was bustling with activity. Verizon, the Village of Hamburg Department of Public Works, Russo Development, Mr. Fitzpatrick and the
At 8 AM Saturday, the volunteers came and boy did they come! Over 150 parents, grandparents, high school students, girl scouts, teachers, administrators, members of the school board and community minded citizens worked side by side with one goal in mind: building a new playground for our children. It was a truly awe-inspiring experience, one that we are honored to have been part of.
We would be remiss in not acknowledging all of those who made this project a reality. Some individuals volunteered their time; others offered their talents and resources, while still others offered monetary support. All were necessary components to achieve our goal. For that we thank you.
A special thank you to Mrs. Peffer, Miss Giallella, Dr. Mark Crawford and the Hamburg Central School Board for their support of this worthwhile venture.
Last but not least, we would like to thank our families and the families of our committee members. Without your support, understanding, and patience, we would not have been able to see this project through. Thank you and we love you.
To the children of UPES, we entrust this playground into your care. Please show it and one another the same respect and love that we have in building it for you. On behalf of the Union Pleasant Community Playground Committee, it is our honor to present this new playground to the