Junior Variety Club hosts grand opening of new playground

Published 9:30 am Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Families can get a sneak peak at what their weekends may be looking like from now on at the Valley City Park’s new playground on April 29.

The Junior Variety Club will host a grand opening and dedication. The club will celebrate the newly installed equipment and dedicate the park to a surprise individual. 

With the help of sponsors and the city of Valley, the club has purchased seven new pieces of equipment for the park. After the dedication, the club will discuss their next steps for the park and the city. 

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“For the last five years, this has been our major project. We felt like that this was a great way to give back,” said Junior Variety club Secretary and Founding Member Kristin Nelson. “We wanted for our community to have a place that had play equipment for all ages, and they weren’t having to drive to the next county over to be able to go to a park and play with their kids.” 

The playground equipment requires a safety fall space. The city of Valley funded and installed the curbing and mulch required.

“I can’t compliment the city of Valley enough,” Nelson said. “They have been so cooperative, so appreciative and very helpful in getting things done.”

Festivities will take place from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. eastern time. Gimme Some Sugar from LaFayette, Top Notch BBQ and Big Mama’s ice cream will be onsite for the event. 

The Junior Variety club began the project in conjunction with the city of Valley in 2018 and 2019 before the COVID-19 pandemic. During that time, they raised funds for equipment from local sponsors. Last year, the group received a grant from the Coosa Valley Resource Conservation & Development Council. 

According to Nelson, the club plans to have the equipment installed before the dedication day. 

“Even if they’re not installed, you know, the club just felt like that. We have waited many years now to give the sponsors their acknowledgement,” Nelson said. “And just be able to go ahead and kind of do a grand opening dedication day of the park.”

Many sponsors were involved in the project development. Each will be honored on signage at the park along with the dedication. Some of the top sponsors are the Coosa Valley Resource Conservation and Development Council, the Charter Foundation, Terrence Brown, Attorney at Law, Chattahoochee Federal Credit Union, Knauf Insulation, Walton Law Firm and Wood Family Eye Care. 

Other local sponsors include Fairfax Drug Co., Auburn Bank, Ponders Nursery, Coca-Cola Bottling Co., Johnson Brown Service Funeral Home, Grossman Law Firm, Givorns, 4 Seasons Heating and Air, Kenny Knox Tire Center, JC Colley Trucking, West End Baptist Church, Captial City Bank, Custom Machine and Fabrication and Daniel’s Drive In.

“Of course, we couldn’t have done any of this without the support of our community,” Nelson said. “We’re very thankful for that.”

The Junior Variety Club consists of a group of 18 women in the community who fundraise and organize community service projects. Fifteen years ago, the members of the Fairfax Variety club decided to recruit new members from the next generation. They became the Variety club and the Junior Variety club.