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Greenfield named ‘playful’ second year in a row

Recorder/Paul Franz
Beacon Field Playground helped earn Greenfield kudos from a national nonprofit dedicated to play.

Recorder/Paul Franz Beacon Field Playground helped earn Greenfield kudos from a national nonprofit dedicated to play.

GREENFIELD — The town has been named a “Playful City USA” for the second year in a row by a national nonprofit dedicated to play, and that designation could bring with it another grant to continue Greenfield’s work to upgrade its parks and playgrounds.

Christy Moore, the town’s recreation director, said she is delighted that the town has once again been recognized for its dedication to building safe playgrounds for its youngest residents.

Greenfield was one of five towns in Massachusetts, and the only town in Franklin County, to receive the KaBOOM! designation, which could bring a grant of $15,000, $20,000 or $25,000 with it.

The town used the grant it received for last year’s KaBOOM! designation from Let’s Play, a community partnership led by Dr. Pepper Snapple Group, to replace the playground equipment on the Academy of Early Learning at North Parish on Place Terrace.

Moore said the town has to renew its application for the designation every year. She said as long as Greenfield continues to upgrade its playgrounds, it should continue to receive the designation, which is based on how much effort a community puts into increasing play opportunities for children, and should continue to receive money to upgrade more playgrounds.

In 2008, the town spent $360,000 in grant money to renovate Hillside Park off Conway, Grove and Elm streets, and most recently, a private group raised money to add to $29,000 of the town’s capital improvement money to install a playground on Beacon Field.

For more information on the KaBOOM! Playful City USA program, visit: www.playfulcityusa.org.

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