Harmon Field board to repair 18-year old playground

Published 10:00 pm Wednesday, March 11, 2015


A piece of plywood covers the opening to where a broken slide was removed from
playground equipment at the Harmon Field playground. The children’s playground is in need of repairs and a group of parents expressed concern on Facebook recently, as
well as to the Harmon Field Board of Supervisors, in order to spark needed repairs.
The board of supervisors said all necessary repairs will be done as soon as possible. (Photo by Leah Justice)

A post with pictures on Facebook has sparked repairs to be done at the children’s playground at Harmon Field in Tryon.

A group of parents posted comments beginning on Feb. 27 with emails sent to the town and two parents expressing their concerns to the Harmon Field Board of Supervisors.

The Harmon Field Board of Supervisors met March 3 and heard concerns from parents, who showed board members damage on the playground. A damaged slide has been taken out with a piece of wood covering the entrance to the slide. A bench is also broken, a piece of plastic broken at the entrance of a tube, swings are old with one missing and other minor repairs are also needed. Parents also urged the board to replace mulch that covers the ground of the playground.

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The Thermal Belt Rotary Club, with funding from the Polk County Community Foundation and several private donors, installed the playground in 1997 next to the Harmon Field Cabin. The playground is heavily used by area children.

Harmon Field Board of Supervisor Chairman Benny Smith said he is very grateful that parents came to the board because board members don’t inspect the playground every time they meet.

Smith said the board decided to make the necessary repairs, with the Harmon Field Supervisor beginning some repairs immediately. He said the board is looking for a replacement slide, which is difficult given its age and if they can’t find a slide to fit they will remove the structure and possibly replace it with another playground feature if the budget allows.

The mulch will be replaced, the bench will be replaced, the swings are planned to be replaced as well as some necessary welding, Smith said.

“We want to fix everything that’s out there,” Smith said. “Our number one priority is safety.”

Lindy Schweizer Buss, who was the parent who first brought the issue to light, posted on her Facebook page following the Harmon Field meeting she attended that she met with the Harmon Field board about the playground and showed board members all the “dangerous, broken equipment as well as voiced our concerns.”

“They took lots of notes and it seemed like a good meeting,” Buss said.

Buss also said the board was quick to respond to complaints and she is hopeful they will fix the problems quickly. Buss also urged parents to express concerns to the town and to the Harmon Field Board of Supervisors until the issues are resolved.

Smith urged anyone who sees any problem at Harmon Field to contact him, Harmon Field Supervisor Travis Aldred or to contact Tryon Town Hall at 828-859-6554.

Harmon Field is owned by the Town of Tryon and is funded through a special tax paid for by Tryon and Tryon Township residents.