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The city of Farmington got a good deal on this new castle playground. It will be installed this month at Rambling River Park.
The city of Farmington got a good deal on this new castle playground. It will be installed this month at Rambling River Park.

Rambling River Park will get new playground equipment

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news Farmington, 55024

Farmington Minnesota P.O. Box 192 / 312 Oak St. 55024

Something big is coming to Rambling River Park in the next couple of weeks.

Before Memorial Day, a new castle will be erected in the park. It's not just any castle, either. It's a really cool one that is likely to delight the community's younger population.

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The park is getting its first piece of new playground equipment in years, and it's sure to impress its users.

Farmington parks and recreation director Randy Distad calls the piece a "theme piece." In this case, it's a castle theme. A castle with four slides, a drawbridge, a climbing wall and plenty of places to climb, hide and pretend.

"It just has added features that set it apart from your traditional equipment," Distad said.

It replaces a geodesic climber, a clown swing, two individual rockers and a four-person rocker that have been part of the playground for years. Distad estimates some have been there since the 1970s.

Those pieces came out earlier this week to make room for the castle. The ship equipment currently in the park will remain, as will the swing set.

This piece of equipment plays well into the city's master plan for Rambling River Park, Distad said. A complete renovation of the park may be years off, but when it happens, the playground will remain in the same place. That master plan also calls for new playground equipment, so this new addition gives the city a jump-start on that renovation process.

Farmington got lucky on the purchase. The castle was a display piece at last year's National Recreation and Park Association's annual conference in Minneapolis. The out-of-state company that created it did not want haul it back, so the company did a drawing to decide what community it should offer the sale to. Farmington was drawn.

The piece would ordinarily cost about $90,000, Distad said, but the company knocked the price back to $60,000. It has been in storage at the installer's warehouse in Prior Lake since last fall's purchase.

Right now, installation is scheduled for May 23-25, but the work could happen earlier if the weather cooperates. The pieces that will be removed will be recycled.

"It definitely fits with the master plan of the park of replacing the playground equipment," Distad said. "I think people are going to want to come out and check it out. It's going to bring some new energy to the park, I think."

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