Stu­dents dig first shov­els at Sun­ny­side

Stanstead Journal - - FRONT PAGE -

Vic­to­ria Vanier, Stanstead

Sun­ny­side El­e­men­tary had sunny skies for its new play­ground’s Ground-break­ing Cer­e­mony, held on the last day of school, last Fri­day. “The project is start­ing, the new sand­box built by the fire­fight­ers was just fin­ished, and the cer­e­mony is the first step. Benoit Trem­blay will start build­ing the moun­tain over the sum­mer and mod­ify the grounds; we’re go­ing step by step. We’ll plant grass and trees in

the au­tumn,” said Claire Ber­trand, the Sun­ny­side teacher spear-head­ing the project. The project, which will trans­form Sun­ny­side’s huge play area into a ‘Nat­u­ral’ kind of play­ground with im­proved sport­ing fa­cil­i­ties and a large gar­den, is val­ued at around $160,000. “But with all the vol­un­teer work, the costs will be re­duced a lot,” she added.

“We’ve raised over $25,000 and we’ve asked the govern­ment for $40,000, but that’s still in limbo be­cause the govern­ment is de­lay­ing any an­nounce­ments on projects. But we want to move ahead with the con­struc­tion this sum­mer. We should have a very dif­fer­ent-look­ing play­ground in Septem­ber,” ex­plained Sun­ny­side prin­ci­pal Steve Weary.

The $25,000 was raised through fund-rais­ing projects put on by teach­ers and stu­dents at the school, and a few lo­cal businesses such as the Stanstead En­ter­tain­ment Cen­tre and Steve’s Pizze­ria. The Town of Stanstead, Toy­ota Ever­green, and the Town­ship­pers’ Foun­da­tion have also all con­trib­uted.

Sun­ny­side stu­dents, staff and spe­cial guests gather with the new sand­box, built by lo­cal fire­fight­ers, at the play­ground project’s ground-break­ing cer­e­mony on the last day of school.

Photo Stanstead Jour­nal

At the cer­e­mo­nial shov­el­ling cer­e­mony: Benoit Trem­blay, Kevin La­fond, Og­den Mayor Michael Sud­low, a rep­re­sen­ta­tive of a for­mally lo­cally con­trolled fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tion, Prin­ci­pal Steve Weary and the two stu­dents cho­sen to get the project rolling.

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