Dothan, Alabama is now a “Playful City USA”. The prestigious award was presented to city officials in New Orleans over the weekend.
The city achieved the award through meeting five different criteria established by the Kaboom Organization, including the formation of a local play commission task force.
Kim Meeker, of Dothan Leisure Services said, “It's recognition of what we've achieved and it's an incentive for us to go quite a bit further and involve the community as we do that.”
Signs will soon be erected around the city letting everyone know the city's playful status.
Work on the parks will require community involvement.
“Our citizens will see some exciting things to come,” Meeker says. “They'll see new playgrounds, but they’re going to be building some new playgrounds and we're going to have a lot of fun together.”
Kaboom offers three, $25,000 dollar grants. The city is applying for one of those grants in the hopes they can use the money toward communication of park locations.
“We want to have a website called Play Dothan and they can see on a map where every playground in Dothan is and they can see color pictures of that playground and they can get directions on exactly how to get there,” Meeker explained.
The goal is to have a great place to play within walking distance of every child and ultimately, a more playful place for all.
Work on two new playgrounds, Pine Hills Park and Old Highland School, is expected to start within the next fiscal year.
Other founding playful cities include:
Cedar City, Utah
Creedmoor, North Carolina
East Cleveland, Ohio
El Paso, Texas
Jamestown, New York
Lake Charles, Louisiana
Lake Worth, Florida
Mountain Grove, Missouri
New Lenox, Illinois
New Roads, Louisiana
San Francisco, California
San Jose, California
Spartanburg, South Carolina