BLOWING ROCK — The construction fences surrounding the Memorial Park playground came down on Sept. 4 as the state entered Phase 2.5 of its reopening from COVID-19-related shutdowns, allowing playgrounds to open.

A number of young children squealed with joy as they arrived to play on the new playground equipment, which has been installed since July, and parents marveled at the changes the playground has undergone since March.

The new playground covers 10,000 square feet and includes 120 features for children to play on, 77 of which are ADA-accessible. It was manufactured and installed by Cary-based Carolina Parks and Play, which was selected by a committee of community members and town staff that held 15 meetings with three different companies, according to past reports.

During a town council meeting on Sept. 8, Mayor Charlie Sellers said that the playground is a result of the town’s strong community focus.

“(Everyone) jumped up to the plate, and now we have a nice, pretty park. It says a lot about our town and our citizens,” said Sellers.

A formal ribbon-cutting ceremony was held by the Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce and the Blowing Rock Parks and Recreation Department at 5 p.m. on Tuesday to celebrate the park’s completion.

The replacement of the old Memorial Park playground equipment, which included wooden fixtures and mulch, began in March as a project between the town of Blowing Rock and the Blowing Rock Tourism Development Authority. The project cost $600,000 and was initially approved during a December 2019 Blowing Rock Town Council meeting.

The new Memorial Park playground is suitable for children aged 2-12 years old, and it is located in the center of Blowing Rock at 1036 Main St., directly behind the gazebo.

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