Play Station pilot launches sports gear into local parks
Play is here to stay with three ‘Play Station’ boxes set to be installed at parks across the Whanganui region as part of a pilot project by Sport Whanganui and REPLAY.
The Play Stations are designed to store sports balls and equipment such as basketballs, rugby balls and footballs, which are available to be borrowed for casual games with friends and whānau.
Sport Whanganui has partnered with local businesses Ali Arc and Display Associates to design and build the colourful stainless-steel boxes, which will be filled with donated new and used sports balls from the REPLAY programme.
“Local insights show that rangatahi lean towards less structured activities which encourage social interaction. We also wanted to provide a fun, sustainable way to activate our open spaces.” says Sport Whanganui Active Community Manager Jodie Brunger.
The first Play Station will be installed at Castlecliff Domain on Friday 15 December, with plans to gift the other two boxes to the Ruapehu and Rangitīkei.
Once installed, the Play Stations will be regularly checked and topped up by Sport Whanganui with balls from REPLAY, a registered charity which collects and redistributes new and used sports gear directly to local children and families that may need help accessing gear of their own.
Denise McLean, Chief Executive Officer of REPLAY says “We are very appreciative of the wonderful partnership Replay has with Jodie and the team at Sport Whanganui. Together we have reconnected hundreds of donated new and used sport gear items back out into the local Whanganui community – all with the purpose of helping keep our communities active.
“We can’t wait to see the Play Stations up and going – in summertime, outdoors, with friends and whanau, being active, trying a new activity – we’re stoked to help play a small part in this wonderful initiative.”
Whanganui District Council have already provided a new concrete pad to allow the Castlecliff Play Station to be fixed securely to the ground, and Progress Castlecliff have offered to help keep an eye on gear levels over the summer break.
Anyone wanting to donate new or unwanted sports gear to the REPLAY programme can contact Paula Darlington at Sport Whanganui on 06 349 2300. Alternatively, people can drop gear directly to any of the REPLAY bin locations around Whanganui: Whanganui Resource Recovery Centre, Rebel Sport, Hunting and Fishing New Zealand and Mitre 10 MEGA Whanganui.