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New playground blessing at Keaau’s Shipman Park

New playground equipment at Herbert C. Shipman Park in Keaau will be blessed in a ceremony on Monday, Jan. 12, 2009.

The public is invited to take part in the ceremony beginning at 10 a.m. The blessing will be performed by the Rev. Earl Ikeda of Puna Hongwanji Mission.

Hawaii County Council Chairman J Yoshimoto, who represents the Third Council District where the park is located, is coordinating the event. Hawaii County Mayor Billy Kenoi also will attend the ceremony and make brief remarks.

Free refreshments will be provided by W.H. Shipman, Ltd., and Puna Fresh Foods.

Site Engineering, Inc., was the contractor for the $258,400 playground. The project includes improvements to various walkways in the area, required by the federal Americans With Disabilities Act, at an additional cost of $32,412. 

The project was designed and prepared by the Department of Parks and Recreation’s Planning Section staff and consists of four major components: a set of toddlers’ (2-5 years old) play equipment, a set of children’s (5-12 years old) play equipment, a climbing wall, and a swing set with two swings. The entire playground has a recycled rubber safety surfacing system that meets current standards of playground safety. 
Council Chairman Yoshimoto initiated the project and supported its construction with a funding in the amount of $50,000.  The balance was provided by the county Parks and Recreation Department’s Capital Improvement funds for playgrounds and disabled accessibility projects.
Aubrey Summers, County Park Projects Manager, was primarily responsible for the project, designing the playground, bidding the project and overseeing its construction.

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