Caps defenseman Mike Green
attended the official opening of the So Kids Can KaBOOM! playground at Associates for Renewal in Education (ARE)in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 19. While the Caps-themed playground was built Sept. 15 by 200 Caps fans and community volunteers, the children could not use it until the cement set.
At 4 p.m. students started streaming out of the school chanting “We want to play!” Green spoke briefly to the group on hand, thanking the adults for helping build the playground and letting the children know that they were the inspiration for So Kids Can and the playground. Green and a student then cut through the plastic fencing to officially open the playground.
The children from the early childhood center were the first on the playground. They tested out the swings, the rock wall, the slide, the adventure bridge, the climbers, the spin cup, the play dozer and the spring rider. They needed a bit of help with the monkey bars and the wobble wheels, but they still had fun. After a half hour the early childhood students reluctantly headed inside and the older children from the after-school program were allowed to play. The playground is perfect for the children at ARE and will be open to all the children in the Bloomingdale neighborhood.
As Green, local police officers who had stopped by to watch and happy parents watched their children enjoying the playground, ARE executive director Thomas Gore called the adults to order to present plaques and certificates to those who made this playground a reality. He presented Green, the Capitals and KaBOOM! plaques, thanking each of them for their part in the playground. He also had a plaque for Elliot Segal, who was unable to attend the event due to a work obligation.
Green, Segal and the Capitals would like to thank everyone who donated to the So Kids Can KaBOOM! playground project during the 2010-11 season, especially program partner IceWEB. They would also like to thank the players, fans and community volunteers who helped build the playground. This playground will now serve more than 600 community members on a daily basis.