A unique opportunity.
The Reimagine Project offers our community the opportunity to work together to create a play-space our children will love. It’s Imagination Station 2.0.
We can do it again!
Starting in the fall of 2017 through the fall of 2018, Grand Haven will undergo a community project that will require over 1,500 volunteers to come together to lead, create, sponsor, and build a new play-space that will take the place of the current Imagination Station.
Let’s walk through the process.
With the leadership of Chris and Kristi Streng, the steering committees have been able to focus their energy on their respective areas. The steering committees meet every other week with city leadership from Pat McGinnis. The planning meetings help prepare each committee for upcoming events and scheduled deliverables. Learn More
Steering Committee Members:
- General Managers: Chris Streng, Kristi Streng
- Art & Special Features: Kirsten Runshke, Magda Smolenska
- Childcare: Erin Shibley
- Children – Design Days: Andrew Ratke, Annie Ratke
- Food: Kelly Larson
- Fundraising: Katie Appold, Mary TenCate
- Materials: Nada Edson, Chad Lahey
- Public Relations: Amy Robbins
- Secretary: Pat McGinnis
- Special Needs: Melissa Richardson, Jeff Troupe
- Tools: Derek Gajdos
- Volunteers: Scott Rant
- At Large: Michelle Bailey-Mesler
- Y Board Member: Lew Gorbach
Design Phase – Design Days!
We are working with a design team that truly understands how to design a playground – KIDS! During Design Days, a three day event taking place October 4-6, 2017, we will depend on children throughout the greater Grand Haven community to spend time designing their dream play-space. This three day event will include research, community leader interviews, needs assessments, and more. One very important part of this process is to identify how children with varying special needs can best interact in the play-space. Accessibility is a top priority. Using their ideas, our design team facilitators will turn to the well seasoned experts, Leathers and Associates. Leathers and Associates, headquartered in Ithaca, New York, is familiar with Grand Haven. Leathers worked with the Grand Haven community 27 years ago to create the current Imagination Station. They will again help turn our kids dreams into a functional design. The end result of the kids creativity and Leathers and Associates experience will allow Grand Haven to have an incredibly well planned and conceptualized play-space that is accessible to our diverse community of kids. Learn More
The Design Revealed!
Community Building Phase
Public Relations: The PR team’s role is to make sure that the word gets out early and often. The PR team will be sharing with the local newspaper and radio stations the latest news, fundraising needs, upcoming events, and volunteer opportunities. The team will also help create all media materials affiliated with various events while continually updating the website and sharing via social media.
Fundraising & Community Building: As the budget is established, the fundraising will take off in late 2017 and throughout 2018. Our fundraising committee will be looking at many avenues to raise money. From fundraising events, personal calls, and grants, our fundraising team will be relied on to achieve our goal for the building phase. We will be looking for every business in the greater Grand Haven to be knowledgable of the community project and how they can volunteer, sponsor, and donate toward this awesome endeavor. Donate Today!
Coordinating Volunteers: With a minimum of 1,500 volunteers required for build week, our volunteer committee will be reaching out to all our Grand Haven organizations, businesses, churches, civil groups, schools, and neighborhoods. We will rely on advertising in local newspapers, community functions, and radio to spread the word. The volunteers set an example of what a small community can do when we all work together! Volunteer Today!
Equipment: An extremely valuable role in the build phase is to manage materials and tools that are donated and collected. Our equipment team will be leaning on many local businesses for their donations and support. They will be looking for trucks and semi trailers to accommodate the number of tools and product donations along with countless drills, hammers, and saws for donation or loan by local contractors. They will also be looking for specialty parts to be custom made by local or regional companies through donation and discount.
Food: Our food committee will help facilitate many events throughout the year-long Reimagine Project. Kelly Larson will lead this committee in facilitating necessary food throughout Design Days and Build Week. We will lean on many local restaurants, local organizations, churches, and individual volunteers for food throughout the events. We will also look for equipment like a refrigerator truck, banquet-style tent, man-made dishwashing station, and storage trailer. We look forward to having food throughout the many event for our volunteers to help to support our community and its effortless involvement.
Pre-Build Construction: We will allow about 2 weeks for pre-build work. This includes preparing the Imagination Station build area by removing all unneeded current playground materials and creating new footings.
Build Week: All of our hard work will pay off! For over a week in the fall of 2018, we will have over 1,500 volunteers that will come together to build Imagination Station 2.0 in Grand Haven. We will have multiple construction captains that will oversee the building process as the play-space suddenly begins to arise around us. Coordination is key to stay on top of every element of the project like keeping volunteers hydrated, fed, and stocked with fresh drill bits. The spirit of the play-space will truly take hold during build week when people of all ages and abilities will work together for a common cause. The culmination of all our hard work will result in not only a play-space, but a community.
Celebrate!: On the final day of construction, our Grand Haven community will celebrate with a grand opening party! Stay tuned to event details in the summer of 2018.