The Norman Transcript

Headlines

September 8, 2013

Building up Briarwood

NORMAN — Volunteers brought the kids of Briarwood Elementary School one step closer to normalcy Saturday as a top-notch playground rose on the Emmaus Baptist Church grounds that houses the school after it was destroyed in the May 20 tornado.

“This helps them rewrite the story, or better rewrite the ending of their story,” said Briarwood Principal Shelley McMillian.

“The last day of school was horrific. It puts one more day between them and May 20,” McMillian said as she watched a group of her kids haul material toward the playground site.

The playground project has been all the kids have been talking about last week, she said. The racing slides. The zip line. The monkey bars.

“They have been fantasizing about it,” McMillian said.

Bon Jovi’s “Living on a Prayer” blasted from oversized speakers. Kids were running and tossing the football with Nike volunteers. More than 200 helpers, ranging from age 5 through retirement age, worked together on play structures, raked wood chips into place, painted the sidewalk and secured fences. It was a party atmosphere, but some serious work was accomplished Saturday morning.

The playground is the first of five to be built by KaBOOM! and Nike as part of the rebuilding effort following the May tornados. Briarwood kids will play at the new structure until they move back. Briarwood and Tower Plaza schools will also get new structures once the rebuilding efforts are wrapped up.

 “I know how to build a playground, but it’s the community coming together,” said Chappy Rago, KaBOOM project manager. “They had five weeks and made it happen. I learned here what it means to be ‘Moore strong.’”

Kathy Webb, a Nike representative from the company’s Oregon headquarters, said that even though the group and some volunteers arrived three days ago to prepare the site, the majority of the work was done in just six hours.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Headlines
  • Chamber Banquet During annual banquet, Chamber of Commerce promotes moving Norman forward

    Amidst the backdrop of music, dancing, dinner and fellowship, business leader Mike Fowler announced that the time for a quality-of-life initiative in Norman has come. As incoming Norman Chamber of Commerce board chairman, Fowler and ...

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Symposium speaker Paul Polik: Commerce can help and bring millions out of poverty

    How to harness the power of commerce to address social and environmental challenges in sustainable ways was the topic of discussion at the University of Oklahoma Center for the Creation of Economic Wealth’s fourth annual Social ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Amber waves turn gray as farms lose younger generation

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Jerry Pfeiffer was thrilled when his son, Kelsey, 25, announced plans to return to the family’s farm in Orlando....

    April 18, 2014

  • Postal retiree luncheon set

    A postal retiree luncheon will be 11:30 a.m. Monday at Golden Corral Buffet and Grill, 123 N. Interstate Drive in Norman. Diners will meet in the lobby. For more information, call Joyce Carle at 872-5157....

    April 18, 2014

  • Flapjack fundraiser set

    The Apple Gold Group, a franchisee of Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill and Bar, will partner with the Global Outreach Team at Go Church to host a Flapjack Fundraiser on April 26. Proceeds raised will be used by team members to purchase ...

    April 18, 2014

  • OU Hornsemble goes to the movies

    The OU Hornsemble will present a concert of music from the cinema at 6 p.m. April 27 in the Paul F. Sharp Concert Hall. Billed as “Movie-Time Music,” the ensemble will present a wide variety of cinematic music from the 1940s to the ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Judge asks pointed questions in gay marriage case

    DENVER — A judge in Colorado who will play a pivotal role deciding whether gays should be allowed to wed in the United States asked pointed questions Thursday about whether Oklahoma can legally ban the unions....

    April 18, 2014

  • Fallin disappointed SBAdenied loans

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Gov. Mary Fallin said Thursday she is disappointed that a federal agency denied a request for loans to businesses in two Oklahoma towns affected by an emergency bridge closure....

    April 18, 2014

  • Sudan: 12 die after mob attacks UN base

    JUBA, South Sudan — An angry mob of South Sudanese youths attacked a U.N. base on Thursday to harm members of an ethnic minority sheltering inside. Peacekeepers were forced to open fire, amid rampaging violence that killed at least 12 ...

    April 18, 2014

  • Woman bound over for trial

    A Slaughterville woman facing a manslaughter charge after the death of an 8-year-old child was bound over for trial this week after a preliminary hearing in Cleveland County District Court. Kimberly Dawn Wenthold, 29, was charged in ...

    April 18, 2014