The Norman Transcript

Columns

March 30, 2014

A picture-perfect day for Kidspace makeover

NORMAN — By Andy Rieger

Transcript Executive Editor

Saturday’s sunrise brought a picture-perfect day for the dozens of volunteers assembled at Kidspace. The massive playground tucked into the corner of Reaves Park was scheduled for a volunteer makeover and the weather cooperated.

City workers had closed the structure for a week while they replaced boards and posts and brought in two semi-loads of wood chips. Kidspace was designed and built by volunteers 15 years ago this month.

Our crew Saturday included a handful of college students, some Rotary exchange students, high school teenagers and even some members of the Air Force stationed at Tinker Air Force Base. Highlight was finding my children’s name and those of their childhood friends engraved in the picket fencing.

The city’s parks crew, lead by Bill Ulch, was outnumbered about 10 to 1 by volunteers.

The morning tools of choice were sanders, rakes and shovels while paint brushes and rakes dominated the afternoon session. They’ll be back at it Sunday morning before reopening the structure next week.

———

A lone trumpet player brought us Taps and then Reveille inside McFarlin Memorial United Methodist Church Friday afternoon. It was time for us to say goodbye to longtime Norman attorney Robert L. “Buddy” Pendarvis’. It was a fitting tribute for a man with boundless energy to get things done.

Pendarvis was a leader from the day he set foot in Norman in 1947 until he died last week at age 85. His fingerprints were on most of what’s happened here in the past 60 years. He lead everything from a popular Sunday School class at McFarlin to the legal community’s bench and bar committee and his neighborhood’s water exercise class.

He loved life and lived every day to its fullest. He dreamed no small dreams for his family which came first and his community which ranked a close second. With a twinkle in his eyes, sweet smile and infectious laugh, he brought energy to any room.

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