Y’all, let me tell you about something exciting: the Sandra Moon Community Center. Although I have been excited for a while now, the mind-numbing, ahem, JOY of working full-time from home with two kids during a pandemic has me longing for a place near home to get away. A place to get away that would force the kids to leave our virtual island in Animal Crossing, and stop killing zombies in Minecraft. A real respite from screens.
The progress the City is making on the new South Huntsville library gives me hope that the dream is close – and there is even more to come for the Sandra Moon Complex. But what may be missing is a playground. That’s where you come in, RCM community!
A Real Community Hub
Here is what we know for sure is going to be added:
- “The Great Lawn” – think movie night, live music, family picnics
- An Arts center – think community cultural events, fairs, theater, music
- Athletic facilities, fields, and gyms – think kids’ sports and weekend recreation
- The new library – BOOKS BOOKS BOOKS and a whole new vision of what a library is for the future, including shared community spaces for all ages!
My family was at the first community meeting at the Grissom theater. Also in attendance were a lot of folks advocating for their own desires at the future complex. We stood up one-by-one at the microphone to ask questions and suggest items for inclusion at the new community center. While holding a floppy, sleeping toddler and accompanied by my fidgety older child, I stood up and begged for a playground – somewhere to unleash my sweet heathens to expend some of their unending energy. People laughed, and I chalked it up as a victory for the parents of South Huntsville. As it was past my kids’ bedtime, we rushed out to start our evening routine at home.
After that night, I retreated back to my normal – working, taking care of two kids and a household. I got complacent. I didn’t email my City Council representative, send letters, or rally fellow parents. I convinced myself that I had done enough by showing up to that meeting.
WHAT? No Playground?
Since then, as the City completes the complex phase by phase, things are opening up. The Pickleball courts are officially open for business – and people love them! But, something important is still missing… A PLAYGROUND.
We all know that playing in the backyard is fun, but the kids love going somewhere else to play too, and not everyone has access to a big backyard. After reading the most recent email update on the Sandra Moon Community Complex, I decided to email our District 3 City Council representative, Jennie Robinson, to ask about the playground. Her quick response explained the City hadn’t received as much interest in the playground as had been received for other amenities planned for the space. She suggested it would be helpful if more residents expressed their desire for a playground.
How YOU Can Help
So, here I am, asking you to help raise our collective mom and dad voices (and not at our children as they conjure their inner daredevils/cage fighters and threaten an emergency room trip we absolutely do NOT want to make right now). But raise them in support of a playground at the Sandra Moon Community Center.
Envision it – you, sitting on a shaded park bench, and your children, happily playing after a trip to the amazing new library. It’s an outing, an experience – a community destination we can all enjoy. Maybe you even go wild and get some exercise on the planned walking path or do box jumps on the park bench while the kids play! I know the playground at Sandra Moon Community Center is something we could all get behind. Let’s join our voices so the City knows this playground at Sandra Moon is supported by South Huntsville, and the community at large. My peace of mind (and maybe yours too) depends on it!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Ashley Casiano is a mom of two, engineer, and project manager at home and at work. She enjoys running, spinning, attempting to be crafty, and traveling.
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