The community of Celina, Ohio introduced their new outdoor challenge course on Monday, April 22. The new space provides activities that encourage teenagers and families to play and ‘challenge’ each other to stay active.
The town was looking for a new kind of space for teens to participate in physical activity besides another playground. Joe Wolfe, Celina Parks and Rec Director, did some research and spoke with DWA Recreation, a GameTime agency, to find something special that would attract older children. Wolfe and Mayor Jeff Hazel heard about challenge courses, obstacle courses designed for open public use, and visited the Indianapolis Challenge Course in Indiana to get a better understanding of what they entail. After some consideration, they concluded that the challenge course is best option for their community because it allows participants that are ages 13 and above to experience physical activity in a new way.
The challenge course was finally completed this spring allowing families and schools of the community to come and try the new obstacles and 40-yard dash lines. According to Wolfe, the most enjoyable part of the challenge course is the timing aspect. “It is HUGE! They seem to love that part of it because they can take turns to see who can complete the obstacles the fastest.”
They hope that this challenge course will encourage people from not only their community but others from outside the area to come visit and enjoy all that Celina has to offer. “We want something that’s going to bring families to our community,” shares Wolfe.
PlayCore recognizes Eastview Park Challenge Course as an Outdoor Adult Fitness National Demonstration Site following design best practices outlined in “Outdoor Adult Fitness Parks: Best Practices for Promoting Community Health by Increasing Physical Activity.” The resource was created with an advisory board of scholars and experts in fitness to help communities understand not just design, but also benefits of outdoor exercise.
To continue to celebrate Eastview Park’s commitment to advancing play and recreation through best practices, the schools will receive a certificate of recognition, become a part of a network of potential research sites, and will be promoted actively to other communities wishing to create recreation spaces using design and/or programming. To locate the new site, check out the National Demonstration Site map.