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Donations required to rebuild McKinley Park Playground | Crime

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Donations required to rebuild McKinley Park Playground

SACRAMENTO, CA - In an assumed act of arson, someone set fire to a wooden playground structure at Sacramento's McKinley park, damaging a third of what children love to play on.

The fire happened over the weekend. On Monday, Sacramento City councilmember Steve Cohn met with other city leaders to determine the next steps.

Cohn said the city's insurance deductable is $100,000, so donations will be necessary to rebuild the playground.

"We'll use the insurance money," he said, "but we'll also look at a few other things, like the parks fund. But taking money from there means a different project won't happen."

Dozens of independent fundraisers popped up almost immediately, but nothing has been solidified as the official donation drive.

Meanwhile, East Sacramento residents paraded through the park, to the playground, looking at what used to be.

"It's a good piece of history," said 10-year-old Cooper Carinci. "Tons of friends come here, we all come here after school; it's just a really fun park."

"We've been coming here for eight and a half years," said Fiona Avenell. "We're devastated. I cannot believe that somebody would do that to this park. I mean, why?"

The playground was built in 1994. 

Scott Brill-Lehn's parents spearheaded the project then, and he hopes to do something similar for his kids.

"I was 10 years old when it was built," he said. "We spent lots of summers here, lots of time. Looking back on it, it was really inspiring to see your parents so active in something that was so important to them."

Cohn wants the playground rebuilt by next summer. Community members think it can be even sooner.

Cohn's office is taking donations through a non-profit organization called "Gifts to Share." All donations go directly to rebuilding the McKinley Park Playground.

People can donate online and choose the McKinley Park Rose Garden.

Another community group called "East Sac Gives Back" is also trying to raise money. So far, the group has raised $2,100. People can donate to the group online.

In the meantime, the burnt portions of the playground will be cleared away to make it as safe as possible.

By Nick Monacelli, nick@news10.net


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