Spring Day of Caring at Warriors' Path State Park April 27

Monday, April 22, 2024 | 08:36am

Darrell’s Dream Boundless Playground at Warriors’ Path State Park will be closed Saturday, April 27 from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. for its Day of Caring/Day of Service volunteer cleanup at the park.

The event, held twice each year and currently in its 17th year, is organized by the Friends of Warriors’ Path State Park in partnership with Tennessee State Parks and several community groups. The park will remain open to visitors on April 27, but access to the playground will be restricted during the cleanup. In case of rain, the cleanup will be rescheduled for Saturday, May 4.

“This has become a semi-annual community event, and we are grateful to all the volunteers and organizations who help with the cleanup,” Park Manager Chris Cole said. “The playground is an outstanding attraction for families, and we want to maintain its special place in our visitors’ experience.”    

With the collaboration of local businesses and community groups, the day has been designated for several maintenance projects, including replenishing the rubber mulch in play areas, pressure washing the playground equipment, weeding the playground and rain gardens, restocking the sand island, and cleaning out the creek.

Organizers expressed a special thanks to the Kingsport Lions Club and the Kiwanis Club of Kingsport for their continued support. Without their financial help, replacing interactive wardrobes and audio improvements on the Braille Trail at the playground would not be possible. 

Sponsors donating goods and/or services include Food City, Hardee’s (Capstone Restaurants), MyCroft Signs, McDonald’s (Faris Properties), and Walmart Super Centers of Kingsport. 

Group organizers that help to organize the event include: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; Celebration Church; Grace Fellowship Church; the City of Kingsport; 

Northeast Tennessee Master Gardeners; Dobyns-Bennett and West Ridge high school Key Clubs; ROTC’s from Dobyns-Bennett, Volunteer, and Cherokee high schools; Tennessee Promise and Tennessee Achieves students from across the region; and students from Milligan College, East Tennessee State University, and Northeast State Community College. Many of these groups have participated for the last 16 years.

Neighbors, churches, and community groups are invited to volunteer. Organizers hope to have approximately 150 or more volunteers participating. 

“Darrell’s Dream Boundless Playground remains in such good shape after 16 years because of our volunteers,” said Mary Steadman, board member of support group Friends of Warriors’ Path. It takes a community. We are so thankful for the community support.”

Warriors’ Path was the first state park in the nation to provide a Boundless Playground. The complex includes an area for children ages 2-5, another for ages 5-12, a sand island and the a-“MAZE-ing” interactive area. It has an eight-station interactive Braille Trail, with the theme of C.S. Lewis’ “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.” There is a fully accessible tree house where children can learn about the history of Warriors’ Path State Park and the native wildlife at the park. The playground draws over 165,000 visitors per year.

For more information about the project and to get involved contact Cole at (423) 239-8531 or Christopher.Cole@tn.gov or Steadman at (423) 956-4330 or mesteadman@aol.com.

For more information about the park visit this link.

For more information about the playground visit this link.