Jun 15, 2024 | By: Sammy Holladay

Northland Arboretum Begins New ‘Nature Playscape’ Project

The Northland Arboretum in Baxter held a groundbreaking ceremony this week for their new “Nature Playscape.” The new playground will mark another addition to the Arboretum, which has seen several new features in the last few years.

The “Nature Playscape” will be an inclusive playground where children of all abilities can enjoy the outdoors while learning about nature. The team at the Northland Arboretum found that the vast property could use more features catered toward a younger crowd.

“We have 13 miles of trail out here that are well developed, but it’s not very palatable for a small child, say a five- to seven-year-old,” said Northland Arboretum executive director Trevor Pumnea. “So the community is really excited about this project. We’ve never had so much social media excitement. We had over 300 likes on the first day and 50 shares, and so it really tells me that we were missing out on a market. And this playground is going to be amazing for the kids in this community.”

Building a playground requires a lot of financial support, but this project already is fully funded thanks to several organizations throughout the community.

“So we just have all these great community partners and as it continues to spread through the community, they want to see more: more recreation, development, more excitement, more things to do at the Arboretum across a greater demographic,” added Pumnea.

The Arboretum knows that receiving this financial support requires trust. With the success of the garden expansion, as well as other features, the Arboretum keeps donors assured that the money is well spent, and the team is always excited to add more things for locals to enjoy.

“A lot of organizations don’t get the type of support that we receive, and I think it’s because we follow through,” Pumnea stated. “When people put their trust and faith in us, we make it happen, and that’s how – we’re that’s the culture around here. And we get after it. Frankly, if you come out here, there’s a lot of equipment moving, there’s a lot of things happening, there’s a lot of gardens getting renovated. So it’s not just about the playscape and this massive garden expansion you see behind me, but it’s about everything we do. We just like to get after it.”

The playground is expected to be completed this fall.

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