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Oldsmar okays playground plan

Volunteers and playgrounds won the City Council's approval twice Tuesday night.

First the council approved the site plan for Friendship Playground, which is to be built by volunteers at R.E. Olds Park in April. Later in the meeting, council members agreed to continue depending on volunteers to build ballfields at Canal Park.

The 15,000-square-foot Friendship Playground was designed in part by the children of Oldsmar, who gave hundreds of suggestions to architect Daniel Burgevin when he first sketched out the plans. Among other features, it includes a slide modeled on the mustache of Mayor Jerry Provenzano.

Organizers of the playground drive are trying to raise $60,000 to pay for construction, as well as round up enough volunteers and tools to do the work.

Meanwhile, several North Pinellas companies have been donating their time and equipment to clear land at Canal Park for the city's four new ballfields, the first step in building a sports complex at the park on Tampa Road.

At the last council meeting, council member Jerry Beverland asked if the work had progressed to the point where the city ought to hire someone to complete it. But after a report on how much progress the volunteers have made, the council agreed Tuesday to stick with them.

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