By Butch Burney, President of Hopkins County Chamber of Commerce
According to the class, the first phase of the Kids Kingdom restoration project, undertaken by the Sulphur Springs Leadership Class of 2021-22 last weekend, was a great success.
The first phase included staining, painting, spreading mulch, and undertaking some construction-type restorations to the park on its 25th anniversary.
Sixty Sulphur Springs High School students joined the Leadership class on Friday and about the same number of Clayton Homes employees and families on Saturday to get the project off the ground. Pro Classic Painting and S&S Construction aided them and provided a workforce for the project.
Together, they stained 95 percent of the wood. The rest will be done this week and spread about 95 yards of the 100 yards of mulch obtained. In addition, they rebuilt one deteriorating slide, an inclined climbing wall replaced another slide, most of the chains, most of the towers were repainted, and many platforms and walking areas were repaired or replaced.
“We owe a great deal of gratitude to the SSHS students and their teachers, and the employees and families of Clayton Homes, along with the City of Sulphur Springs and other volunteers who gave their time this weekend to get so far along in the restoration,” said Butch Burney, class president. “It was amazing to see how far this project came in just one weekend. But, the best part was watching these volunteers of all ages give of themselves to make Kids Kingdom whole again.”
The project is not complete. Along with finishing some of the construction projects and painting/staining, the class – with the help of the City of Sulphur Springs, will install new swings, a handicap swing, tire swing, interior slide, and lighting once the equipment comes in. In addition, the construction class at SSHS took down the decorative fish on the playground walls and made new ones, which will be painted by SSHS art students and rehung.
“Just like when built back in 1997, this is truly a community project,” Burney said. “We have been blessed by a giving community that has taken this project to heart.”
Clayton Homes, Sherwin-Williams, which donated 100 gallons of stain, Texas Heritage Bank, Alliance Bank, City National Bank, CHRISTUS, the News-Telegram, Hampton House, Kiwanis Club, Pilot Club, I-30 Pallets, Neighbors of Sulphur Springs, Jennings Heat, and Air, Lowe’s Distribution Center, Fix N Feed, Still Meadow Dairy, Molly Crouch and the Hopkins County Chamber of Commerce were sponsors for the project.
The leadership class and City will have a hamburger/hot dog lunch reveal party when the restoration is complete. Until then, they reopened the park for play.