Some residents living near Prairie Winds Elementary School (PWES) might have noticed that the playground gazebo has recently been removed. A long time staple of the PWES playground, students would often use the gazebo as a place to rest in the shade and chat with friends. So why was it removed?
“When I started, I heard right away that the floor was rotting and that it needed a new roof, so there were just some things wrong with it that really made it a safety issue. We either needed to replace the floorboards (which isn’t super easy to do) or we just had to deal with the fact that it was rotting,” PWES Principal Alicia Welch told me over the phone. She explained that although she was warned about the gazebo’s looming need for replacement last year, she didn’t want to make any sudden changes during her first year as principal.
“We knew that it was a very important fixture to the school community.”
– Alicia Welch
But will the gazebo be replaced with a new gazebo or something else entirely? Mrs. Welch reported that the PTO purchased a Ga-ga ball pit a few months ago to replace the gazebo with. “We decided it made the most sense to put it in that location because we knew the gazebo either needed to be replaced or rebuilt.”
The Ga-ga ball pit is expected to be installed some time before school starts again in August.