Playground concept

This is what a replacement playground at Purcell Lake might look like, though the actual design and fixtures are still to be decided.

Purcell’s Parks & Recreation Department is asking for public input that can be used as part of a grant application to replace the aging Rotary Playground at Purcell Lake.

Generations of youngsters have enjoyed the playground since it was established by Purcell Rotary Club in 1987. 

Parks director John Blue said the city took over the playground  in the late 1990s.

Ongoing development at the lake has a goal of turning the lake and surrounding area into a great retreat that’s close to home.

“After years of wear and tear, the play structure has reached the end of its life and needs to be replaced,” said John Blue, parks director. “With the upgrades to the Lake Trail and the addition of the new restrooms, the playground is the next logical step.”

To make that happen, the department is working to get the replacement done as quickly and efficiently as possible.  

“One of the ways that we are working to fund this project is through the Land and Water Conservation Fund Grant provided by the Oklahoma Department of Tourism,” Blue said. “The grant would cover 50 percent of the cost of the new play structure and help us construct something bigger and better than we had before.  

“Play structures are not cheap and require a lot of funding to see them built. Community support cannot be understated.”

Blue listed the following playground goals:

• Replace the main play structure with something equal to, or exceeding, the current play structure.

• Add other features to the playground (benches, small toys, swings, etc.).

• Improve the landscaping and shade surrounding the playground with shade structures and trees.

• Repair and upgrade the pavilion located near the play ground.

There are many things the public can do to help complete this project, including:

• Submit a letter showing your support for the project.  Hand written or emailed is great, or follow the link below to submit a letter online!

• Have kids send in letters and drawings of how they would play on the new structure. (“We would love to see what the kids can dream up,” Blue said. “Parents and teachers can be an enormous help with this contribution!”)

• Donate to help pay for the cost of the play structure and amenities.  Community investment in these kinds of projects helps to increase the quality of the end product.

“Letters and drawings will be submitted with the Land and Water Conservation Fund Grant application to show the Oklahoma Tourism Board that we are willing to put our full support behind the project,” Blue said. “Donations show we are willing to help fund the project.  Every little bit counts!”

A link to submit a letter of support online can be found at

Or letters, drawings, and donations can be dropped off at the Purcell Multipurpose Center or at City Hall or mailed to City of Purcell Parks & Recreation, Rotary Playground Replacement Project, 230 W. Main, Purcell, OK, 73080. 

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