Eleven Arizona cities, including eight Valley-area cities received recognition as part of the 151 national Playful City USA.
Casa Grande, Chandler, Coolidge, Fountain Hills, Gilbert, Mesa, Phoenix and Tempe have been selected for their commitment to improving local children’s access to outdoor play by KaBOOM!, a national group seeks to create play space within walking distance of all American children. The group distributes grants to help communities build playgrounds.
“The Play Deficit continues to harm our children and stifle their mental and physical development, while directly facilitating the ongoing childhood obesity crisis,” said Darell Hammond, founder and CEO of KaBOOM!
Gilbert and Chandler were given the distinction for the fifth year in a row. Chandler has been connecting Chandler Unified School District and Chandler Recreation to have a reciprocal sharing of each other’s facilities for health and recreation activities. Gilbert has hosted a community activity week that helps residents coordinate with local physical activity programs.