Fun for the whole family: MacDill community enjoys new playground

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Lauren Cobin

Construction of the new all-inclusive Eagle Park Playground completed May 2022, at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida.

“This park represents our ongoing commitment to bettering our community,” said Dawn Sousa, community director for Harbor Bay family housing.

The staff’s main priority was to meet the needs of the Exceptional Family Member Program and the Americans with Disabilities Act, which ensured that children of all abilities have a safe experience using the playground.

“This playground has been situated near some of the base’s new ADA homes,” said Sousa. “For us project managers, it was important to ask the community what they would like to see in a park.”

Nearly five years since the last playground addition, Harbor Bay designed the new area to stimulate the imaginations of children of all ages with new features as well as some familiar favorites.

“I like to play on the swings!” said Finley Dixon, (age 3), daughter of Sarah Dixon and U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer Christian Dixon, assigned to Air Station Clearwater.

The new playground is conveniently located across from Bayshore’s waterfront walking path and has served as a central location to help bring together members from across the community.

“This is my favorite playground to take my kids to,” said Sarah Dixon. “The shade and turf make it extra comfortable to spend time outside.”

Incorporating scenarios to influence teamwork and boost community morale, the Harbor Bay team hopes the design will attract families to spend their day at the waterfront park.

“Our vision here is for this park to be a destination,” said Kurt Wicker, facilities director at Harbor Bay. “Instead of just a playground, this is a place where people want to take their whole family to hang out together.”