Six Rotary Clubs in Columbia come together to fund new playground

Kathleen O'Dell People of Action, Projects

All six Columbia Rotary Clubs worked together to raise $51,000 for the Clary-Shy Community Park project in Columbia. Rotary Club representatives presented the check to the Columbia City Council on Monday, Dec. 17. The check will help fund the park’s new farm-themed playground. The playground will be built in the existing Clary-Shy Park, a 20-acre area located between West Ash Street and Clinkscales Road that has previously housed the Columbia Farmers Market. The playground is part of a larger master plan, which will include a pavilion for the farmer’s market and amphitheater. Mike Griggs, director of the Columbia Parks and Recreation Department, first received the idea for a playground in an email from Jan Grossmann, president of Columbia Rotary South, 14 months ago. As of December, $2.9 million has been collected for the park in donations and grants, Griggs said. “It is such a tremendous asset to have those guys here in town,” he said.

Grossmann said the collaboration between the six clubs has been a positive experience. “It’s the first time all six of the clubs have joined together in partnership to do some kind of a local project that would benefit the community,” Grossmann said. Rotarians said they hope to have the playground completed by March 2019.