BORDEN — The old playground equipment, which has been a fixture at Wood Township Park for 60 years, has served its purpose. The swingset is outdated and does not conform to today's standards.
"It has been very useful but has seen better days," Wood Township Trustee Irene “Renie” Coffman said. "We needed an upgrade."
That upgrade will be officially revealed Sunday afternoon.
Several yards away from the old playground sits the new one, with all ADA compliant equipment which includes an all inclusive playground for children with physical and mental disabilities and a soft pad that provides cushion in case of a fall.
"This is important to the township and fills the need of the community," Township Clerk Brenna LaDuke said.
The playground, by Play & Park Structures, was funded by Wood Township, costing $96,000. The new swings allow a parent to sit next to a child and the playground includes numerous safe slides.
"There are six or seven elements that make an all inclusive playground and we meet them," Coffman said.
Coffman said in 1933 William Borden’s decedents gifted the Historic Borden Museum, which sits next to the park, and surrounding grounds to Wood Township with the express intent that the grounds be used only for the purpose of a playground. With the upgrades, the playground has been named as a National Demonstration Site for meeting best practices in design and program elements.
A parking lot in front of the Borden Museum, that sits on the park property, was completed earlier this year. Coffman said plans to renovate the nearly 200-year-old museum are also on the table as a future project.
The museum is currently available for rental. The cost for Wood Township residents is $65 and $75 for those living outside the township. Once the playground is dedicated Sunday work to spruce up the museum and its surroundings will begin. A gazebo and garden will be constructed along with restrooms. It's an ongoing effort to improve public facilities in Borden to attract more visitors. Coffman said with many motorists using Star Valley Way, which opened in 2015, as their route to Starlight and Huber's Winery, it's time to dress up certain public areas in Borden to encourage people to stop and visit the town.
"We want to give them some place to go," Coffman said.
The dedication Sunday will begin at 2 p.m. and includes speakers including District 70 State Rep. Karen Engleman and Clark County District 2 Commissioner Jack Coffman. There will also be a celebration picnic after the ribbon cutting which will include hot dogs, drinks, chips and ice cream. The community will be involved in the event — Borden Volunteer Fire Department will grill the hot dogs and the picnic is being sponsored by the Borden Lions Club and New Washington State Bank.
"We are two different entities [Borden and Wood Township] but we work together. We all wear different hats," LaDuke said. "This is exciting for our community."
Borden, which is part of Wood Township, has 922 residents and all of Wood Township includes 3,001 people and is growing, Coffman said.