Elementary school raising funds for new playground

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The Friends of Cooper’s Crossing School Society is just $15,000 shy of its goal to raise $265,000 for a new playground at the kindergarten to Grade 4 school.

The society is organizing its second annual Christmas Market, which will be held at the school Nov. 24, to hopefully reach its goal and build the playground next spring.

Julie Gutowski, vice president of the society, said the market will include 40 vendors – mostly consisting of local artisans selling home décor, handmade bags and accessories, cutting boards, knitted items, handmade jewelry, body products and wreaths. There will also be some representatives from direct sale companies.

“We wanted to fill up as much as we can with unique vendors first and artisans,” Gutowski said. “It’s going to be a fun, family event, an opportunity for unique Christmas shopping and supporting local artists as well as supporting the school.”

The event will take place from 5 to 8:30 p.m. and donations will be accepted at the door in place of admission. Money will also be raised through table rentals, photos with Santa, face painting, a concession and bake sale.

There will also be a “lucky ticket” silent auction where attendees can purchase tickets for $2 to be entered into a draw to win a variety of items, Gutowski said, adding names will be drawn when the event wraps up.

She said items donated for the silent auction include tickets to a Calgary Flames game, tickets to a Calgary Hitmen game, sunglasses, a gas card, gift baskets and more.

Cooper’s Crossing School opened in September 2016 and has no existing playground. Gutowski said the society has raised $125,000 through various fundraisers like bake sales, last year’s Christmas Market and donations from local businesses and individuals.

The society also received a Community Facility Enhancement Program provincial grant to match the funds it raised, so it’s currently sitting at $250,000.

Gutowski said the new playground will include a large climbing wall, as well as a large climbing net structure, several slides, monkey bars and a track ride. The society would like to see the playground built in April.

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