Almost a year after initial conversations began to replace the 28-year-old structure with an accessible play space for all ages and abilities, the Reimagine Project committee announced this week that they raised the $500,000 goal for the project.
While $400,000 had been raised by June, the committee spent the past few weeks working to raise $50,000 as part of a Michigan Economic Development Corp. matching grant. Since the funds were raised by the July 27 deadline, the project will receive the $50,000 match.
Residents, businesses, municipalities and non-profit organizations contributed toward the project, according to a press release.
“The outpouring of monetary and volunteer support from our community is not a surprise,” said Chris and Kristi Streng, the project’s co-chairpersons. “Our community of doers love a challenge and believe in the power of collaboration.”
The Tri-Cities Women Who Care and the 100 Men Who Give also supported the project by raising more than $25,000 for it, according to a press release, and The Home Depot Foundation approved a $24,000 donation. Local businesses such as Automatic Spring Products, Grand Haven Custom Molding, Herman Miller, JSJ Corp., Shape Corp. and Westwind Construction raised more than $70,000.
Fundraising co-chairperson Mary TenCate said the project’s fundraising cabinet worked since January to have funds in place for Build Week, which is scheduled for Oct. 9-14.
“We are so honored to be part of such a giving community of individuals and companies that see value in community spaces that offer our children the ability to play in a safe environment that is accessible for all,” said Katie Appold, the other fundraising co-chairperson.
Efforts for fence pickets and playground components also helped toward the fundraising goal.
More than 500 fence pickets remain available. To purchase a fence picket, visit gh-reimagine.org/picketfence, or donate $100 through the Grand Haven Area Community Foundation website. Pickets ordered before Aug. 15 will be installed during Build Week; pickets ordered after that date will be installed later.
More than 1,500 volunteers are expected to help build the new play space. Scott Rant, chairman of Build Week volunteers, said they hope to have everyone scheduled by Aug. 15 so they can order shirts and prepare for the work.
People can register to volunteer at gh-reimagine.org/volunteers.