Reynolds Park to get new playground feature

Children may be scrambling around on a rope structure in Reynolds Park next summer provided through the efforts of a Fort Dodge chiropractic office and a bottled water distributor.

The Fort Dodge Parks, Recreation and Forestry Commission on Wednesday voted to approve the installation of the new feature. It will consist of three supports made to look like large rocks with a rope net stretched horizontally between them.

Leaders of Active Health Chiropractic and Blue Ribbon Pelham Waters, both of Fort Dodge, have volunteered to raise the money needed to buy the new playground feature, according to Ryan Maehl, the city’s recreation administrator. He estimated the cost at $35,000.

He said it should be installed next spring.

The rope and artificial rock structure will replace the existing playground equipment in the park.

It will not be the only new amenity to be installed there.

Midwest Fence and Gate Co., of Fort Dodge, will provide a new backstop behind home plate at the park’s ball diamond, Maehl said.

Reynolds Park is bordered by Third Avenue North, Fourth Avenue North, 17th Street and 18th Street.

In other business, Lori Branderhorst, the director of parks, recreation and forestry, reported that attendance at the annual girls state softball tournament held at Harlan and Hazel Rogers Sports Complex was down by 805 people this year.

She said 18,752 people attended the weeklong event last month.

Last year, the attendance figure was 19,557.

Branderhorst attributed the decline to a lack of local teams in the tournament and a day of rain.