The Nashville Predators Foundation, Preds staff and close to 200 volunteers from organizations across Middle Tennessee dedicated their Thursday to build a playground, but not without a core mission in mind.
The day's mission? To play.
Sure, there were 15 projects to complete to see a finished playground in the space where mulch, concrete and grass currently sat, but all of that would get done regardless. The most important thing was that all 183 volunteers who showed up were going to have fun and play in the space they were creating for others to do the same.
There was shovelers tossing mulch and stage-builders hammering nails to the beat of the blasting music. Volunteers in different stages of life and with completely different professions stopped what they were doing to dance the wobble alongside each other on top of the fully set playground. During those six hours of building, those volunteers redefined the definition of work.
"KaBOOM! does a great job of vetting organizations to find groups that will not only take care of the playgrounds they build for years to come, but who have a high need for play space," Nashville Predators Foundation Senior Director of Community Relations Rebecca King said.
Video: Preds staff build and donate a seventh playground
KIPP Nashville College Prep was a school in dire need of a place for their students to play, making their campus the perfect location for the seventh annual playground build for the Nashville Predators Foundation and KaBOOM!
KaBOOM!, a national non-profit whose mission is to give all children the playground they deserve, partnered with local organizations, including the Nashville Predators, to create a space where balanced and active play can allow students to thrive.
At the end of the work day, dozens of students held hands as they walked through the spirit tunnel made up of volunteers and KaBOOM! employees to view their newly revealed playground. They stopped at the very edge of the playground, eagerly anticipating the moment they could finally enjoy the finished product. Just one more thing had to be done: a ceremonial ribbon cutting with Mayor Megan Barry and representatives from each organization. Mayor Barry gave her remarks, the whole crowd cheered and the students were finally able round out the day's mission and play.