Thanks to the Bryan Kiwanis Club, children at the East End Park in Bryan have new playground equipment that doubles as outdoor musical instruments.
Wednesday, Bryan Kiwanis Club members, Bryan Mayor Carrie Schlade and the kids and instructors at the Bryan Parks and Recreation Preschool welcomed three pieces of new outdoor musical playground equipment to the park on East High Street, next to the East End Pool.
The equipment, installed by Bryan Parks and Recreation staff, was purchased for $11,000 by the Bryan Kiwanis Club through its various club fundraisers, including the annual reverse raffle and popcorn sales at city band concerts and football games, according to Mike Lewis, club treasurer.
“I saw a post on Facebook that a club in Valparaiso (Indiana) had done something similar. It sounded like a great idea so we brought it here,” Lewis said on Wednesday as the club unveiled the equipment, which includes a lily pad, a set of four colorful flowers and a xylophone.
Each stand-alone outdoor musical play instrument emits a different sound or tone when played with a rubber drumstick. The innovative design of the instruments make them “durable, sustainable and perfectly tuned sound sculptures,” according to information from the maker’s website, www.freenotesharmonypark.com.
“I think they’re really neat. I think they’ll be a hit with the kids,” said Bryan Parks and Recreation Director Ben Dominique. He said with input from Schlade, the decision was made to install the musical play equipment in East End Park because “we tried to pick (a park) that needs more play equipment,” he said.
Lewis said Bryan Kiwanis Club hopes to secure grant funding from Kiwanis International and the Bryan Area Foundation, along with matching club funds, to purchase two more sets of musical play equipment for other city parks.
“If we can, we’re hoping to be able to spend about $33,000 total, including today, for more equipment,” Lewis said.
The Bryan Kiwanis Club meets Wednesdays at noon at the Bryan Eagles Club, 221 S. Walnut St.