While many think of a ribbon cutting as just pomp and circumstance with a comically large scissors, the Young Families of Clarkfield imagined something different for the opening of a new playground in North Park.
Instead, nearly 30 kids from the Clarkfield Area Charter School participated in a "ribbon breaking" by rushing toward the newly-constructed jungle gym through a vibrant purple ribbon, complete with slides, tubes and monkey bars.
The Young Families of Clarkfield hosted the opening ceremony, as well as being beyond the playground project plans. Starting in September of 2012, the group was created as a task-oriented organization whose main goal was to raise $20,000 and build a playground in a year, sponsoring fundraisers such as the Santa Dash 5K last winter.
The playground was more than just cosmetic, as Clarkfield was without new playground equipment for almost 20 years.
"It was outdated and not safe," said Katie Zuraff, the Chairperson of Young Families of Clarkfield. "There was no place in town equipped for a wide range of ages. They were either not suitable for young ages or too boring for older ages."
Zuraff also explained that the playground also serves as a place for young families to meet, create new friendships and cultivate a strong family presence in Clarkfield.
The new playground serves as a compliment to the North Park area, that already houses many amenities for family entertainment, including the recently installed frisbee golf course.
Zuraff pointed to the vast number of local donations as a good sign.
"It means the community has a strong sense of belonging," Zuraff said. "It also shows that they value young families staying as well as bringing in new young families."
There were over sixty donors, mostly from Clarkfield, but also from closely surrounding towns like Montevideo, Granite Falls and Marshall. For a complete list of donors, look up the link on www.clarkfield.org.