A glimpse of the past...
Nestled in a shady corner of White Park, the current Monkey Around Playground’s
iconic wooden structures were designed in 1994 by Concord’s children. For more than two decades, it has been the destination playground for communities in and around the Capital City and Leathers & Associates. The playground was made possible by generous donations and hardworking volunteers who participated in a unique ‘community build’ alongside playground experts, Leathers & Associates. The playground was originally expected to have a 20-year lifespan, but thanks to Concord’s Parks Department, and the help of Friends of White Park, we have carefully maintained and repaired the playground elements for the past 26 years with plans to move forward to create a playground everyone can enjoy.
A gem nestled in
the heart of our community,
for kids & families
to play, grow, and make memories.
December 2017: FOWP me with City Manager and Parks Department to discuss the future of Monkey Around Playground.
February 2018: Gene Connolly, beloved former principal of Concord High School, submits letter to City on the importance of inclusive design for the new playground.
February - March 2018: FOWP informally meets with five playground construction companies and reviews possible designs.
March 2018: FOWP meets with Concord's Recreation and Parks Advisory Committee (RPAC) to discuss need to replace playground.
August 2018: FOWP meets with community members involved in the original Monkey Around build for guidance.
October 2018: FOWP meets with RPAC to provide updates and discuss next steps.
November 2018: FOWP presents to City Council a proposal to pay for a redesign.
March - July 2019: FOWP works with Parks Department to review responses to the request for proposals from playground builders and selects Playgrounds by Leathers ('Leathers') as the design firm. Leathers was the company that designed and helped with the community build of the original Monkey Around Playground.
June 2019: FOWP & Parks Department host 25th Anniversary playground celebration.
December 2019: FOWP & Parks Department meet with Leathers to discuss the design phase.
January 2020: Community input sought for playground redesign. 200 community members completed surveys, design input sessions held at two Concord elementary schools, and three community meetings were held.
February 2020: FOWP hosts sneak peek of new proposed redesign during Winter Carnival.
February 2020: FOWP & Parks Department hold second of three community meetings to solicit input.
November 2020: The New Hampshire Council on Developmental Disabilities awards FOWP a Smile Award for its commitment to developing a new playground that is fully accessible to children with disabilities.
November 2020: FOWP updates RPAC on fundraising and implementation plans for a new playground.