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Bellevue Downtown Park Playground to be Redesigned for Accessibility

The Rotary Club of Bellevue and the City of Bellevue will makeover the Bellevue Downtown Park playground to be accessible for children teens and adults of all abilities. Families can preview the concepts Saturday at the park.

Children and families of all abilities will soon be able to enjoy the play area at Bellevue Downtown Park with sculptures kids can touch and music kids can create, according to the city.

The Rotary Club of Bellevue and the city plan to redesign and expand the park with new features to accommodate children with disabilities, including components like touchable and climbable sculptures, a music plaza, and a "Whimsy Plaza" that evokes Dr. Seuss. It also will be five times the size of the current playground.

The Rotary Club of Bellevue is leading the effort to raise $3.5 million to build the playground, possibly by 2015, according to the city.

Families can learn more about the playground overhaul at a "Play for All" Expo at the park this Saturday at an expo from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The expo also will have activities that can help kids understand disabilities including a wheelchair basketball demo, blind navigation challenge, wheelchair obstacle course, wheelchair challenge activities, ASL teaching, video phone calls, pup command training, Braille name tags and adaptive science equipment, according to the city.

Participants are invited to visit 10 stations and complete a Play for All passport to pick up a prize.

Other groups participating include Canine Companions, Alliance of People with disAbilities, Autism Speaks, Outdoors for All, Lighthouse for the Blind, Steve Ferreira, Boy Scouts of America, Girl Scouts, Autism Speaks, ARC of King County and AccessSTEM DO-IT Program, according to the city.

If you go 

The Play For All Expo will be Saturday Sept. 29 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m at Bellevue Downtown Park.

Event Schedule:

  • 10:00 - 10:10 a.m. - Opening Flag Ceremony
  • 10:10 - 10:30 a.m. - Inspiration Playground Project Information
  • 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. - Discovery stations, disability awareness information and interactive activities - activities include wheelchair basketball demo, blind navigation challenge, wheelchair obstacle course, wheelchair challenge activities, ASL teaching, video phone calls, pup command training, Braille name tags, adaptive science equipment.  Scout activities - signal tower with wheelchair access, blindfolded rope tying contest, blind tent pitching, disability awareness merit badge classes, taking care of service dogs.
  • 10:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. - Entertainment - Bellevue Youth Theatre Glee Club, Seattle Hula Productions, Bellevue High Jazz Band
  • 10:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. - Food Vendors - Charlies Buns N' Stuff, Lumpia World
  • 1:45 p.m. - Closing Ceremon

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