Dear Saint Mary’s family and friends,
My name is Khoi Do. I have two children at Saint Mary’s. Matthew is in Kindergarten and Thomas is in pre-school. I was playing with them on the playground several months ago and noticed that the equipment is very much in need of an update . This is not just cosmetic, but it can be a safety issue, especially for our younger students. For instance, the tire swing was quarantined for several months due to termites before it was eventually removed. Most of our Saint Mary’s students spend time playing outside daily (if weather permits). Having a modern, functional playground would not only improve their safety but it would also improve their cardiovascular health. As a parent and a physician, I believe that a healthy mind requires a healthy body. When I inquired about rebuilding the playground, I found out that there was no immediate plan due to lack of funding. With the help and blessings from Dr. Dertinger and our PTO, we have begun the process of funding and planning. The cost of a high-quality industrial playground is significant. At this time, we have not decided on a vendor, and we are gathering estimates from different companies. Our preliminary research indicates that, to rebuild our pre-school and main playground, the PTO will need to raise roughly $70,000. So far we have accomplished half of that number. If we cannot raise the whole amount, we may consider rebuilding the playground in several stages, but this would not be ideal or cost-effective. Our goal is to start construction this spring.
I think that having a modern, safe, and functional new playground will improve our children’s safety and health, and improve Saint Mary’s image. This is a large and important undertaking that will require everyone’s help. We welcome all volunteers, donations, sponsorships, expertise, and opinions as we move forward with this project. If you have any comments, please email me by February 15. Depending on support and interest, future projects could include a small track around the playground, refurbishing the outdoor basketball hoops, and improving the field adjacent to the playground.
Proud Parent at Saint Mary’s
Hospitalist at St. Francis Hospital
Pictures: Main structure with missing slide, monkey bars with 2×4 reinforcement