There are many valid reasons to build a playground especially in today’s times. Let us give you just two reasons: 1) to give children of all races, creeds, and colors a safe place to play together and 2) to build community through education and inclusion instead of tearing them down with barriers and restrictions. This playground could become a place of healing and remembrance.
A safe place to play is pretty self-explanatory but facts and studies show children (pre-COVID) spent 7 hours plus per day in front of a screen. But only 5% of children age 6-17 got 60 minutes of play a day, which is the federally recommended amount of exercise per day a child should get. Add to that doctors and psychologists alike, say children need free play to strengthen their physical, mental, and emotional capacities. A playground provides a solution to these problems, giving children somewhere to play freely together without worrying about anything but just playing.
Reason #2 might be harder to understand but in Mooresville, we are looking to build a playground to provide a sense of community for a family that put so much time into this location and then tragically lost the child who spent a lot of time at the park without getting to actually enjoy it.
The Thompson family spent the majority of their time at Stumpy Creek Park ball fields as their older two sons chased their baseball dreams. Their youngest son, Brody, too young to play baseball, spent time playing in the dirt and grass near the fields. The Thompsons unexpectedly lost Brody to a drowning accident. They didn’t want anyone to forget Brody’s glowing smile and contagious laughter, so they thought what better way to remember him than at a place that brings so much laughter and smiles, as well as in the place where he spent so much of his young life. This playground provides not only an educational opportunity to raise awareness about water safety, but also a spot to remember Brody. What better place to educate and remember than a playground filled with children laughing and playing? The one place they can escape to be creative and be a kid.
It is the goal of this family and the Make an Impact Foundation to provide a playground that meets the needs of this community by providing a safe place for families to come and enjoy a community and just play. We can just see it now the Brody Thompson Playground, a safe place to play and grow.