Minnesota Playground Honored

The benefits of a free playground awarded to the New Ulm Parks and Recreation Department last summer keep multiplying.

The project recently received the 2010 Award of Excellence from the Minnesota Recreation and Park Association.

New Ulm had been trying for five years to replace old and outdated playgrounds with safer ones when the department won a playground giveaway from BCI Burke.

“What makes this project truly unique are the partnerships created to complete the project,” said Cheryl Kormann, assistant director for the New Ulm department. “The 3M Foundation awarded a significant grant to help complete the project under the recommendation and guidance of plant manager John Illikman, who helped organize the playground community build utilizing 3M workers and retirees.”

The comprehensive community effort included New Ulm Park and Recreation staff, area neighbors, restaurant staff and local media.

The new playground, installed in North Market Park, includes a Nucleus play system and fitness-orientated activities that promote strength, balance, endurance and aerobic fitness.

The MRPA Awards Committee was created in 1987 with the purpose of acknowledging individual members and agencies for their excellence in the field of Parks, Recreation and Leisure Services.

BCI Burke, with headquarters in Fond du Lac, Wisc., maunfactures commercial playground, park and recreation equipment.