BLACKFOOT — The Blackfoot Community Center (BCC)-Activity Center at 257 S. Broadway is home to the only indoor playground in town and fundraising efforts are underway to make sure it stays open for children in the area to enjoy for many years to come. The playland, which was installed in August, was made possible through a variety of grants and is a thrill for kids with a bouncy track, rope swings, balance beams, basketball hoops, ping pong tables and climbing equipment, similar to that found at some fast food restaurants.
BCC executive director Ashlee Howell said, "Grants are getting harder to come by, which is why a three-month fundraising effort, dubbed 'The Funnest Fundraiser Ever- Playland and Party Palooza' with a goal of $30,000, kicks off this week.
"Grants are becoming more scarce, they are very competitive and there is no guarantees of what we will get," she added. "We need to take action now to ensure self sustainability."
The goal is for the 130 people involved in the community center, (board members, administration, staff and children) to be responsible for raising $235 each.
"In order to do that, you would need to sell one birthday party package and 100 playland passes," Howell explained. "I know that may sound like it would be super hard, but we will sell a set of 10 for $20 (a 30 percent savings). You will only need to sell 10 sets to 10 people to hit your goal."
Howell encourages everyone to think about this for inexpensive Halloween gifts (an alternative to candy) or for Christmas gifts. A party package and set of 10 playland passes are also available for a discounted price through the fundraiser for only $50.
"This playland is used by kids daily and is such a great way for them to get their heart rate up and burn off energy...it's nice for Blackfoot, an area where we have about 9 months of winter," she added. Howell stressed that the playland is carefully cleaned and sanitized daily.
The BCC has two centers in Blackfoot; the Activity Center, which is geared toward older children and operates similar to a traditional 'Boys and Girls Club.' The BCC Children's Museum of Idaho at 157 W. Sexton, which has an early learning center for younger children.
Both centers hold a variety of activities, including the popular SHARK after school club, for young children and teens in the community.
"A contribution truly makes a difference to children, youth and families in the community. All proceeds from this fundraiser will benefit the Blackfoot Community Center," Howell emphasized
The BCC is a non-profit organization. For more information call 208-785-3121.