New playground installed at North School
by Glenn Moore
Feb 14, 2014 | 1358 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
North School playground installed
North School students play on newly installed playground equipment during a lunch recess Wednesday.  Glenn Moore/Tracy Press
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North School first-grader Hayden Van Johnson climbed the steps leading to a platform where a long line of students waited to cross a small footbridge at lunchtime Wednesday.

“I liked the bridge. It’s like a real one crossing a waterfall,” Hayden said after his turn. “The best part was climbing up to see the view.”

The bridge was one part of a new playground structure that was installed last week and opened up to students Tuesday at the kindergarten-through-eighth grade school. The playground replaces one that was destroyed by arson Nov. 11.

Principal Frederick Medina said he was surprised when crews arrived Feb. 3 to begin the weeklong playground installation, which was originally scheduled for spring break, the week of April 18.

Medina learned from Bill Willner, Tracy Unified School District director of building, maintenance and operations, that the installation was moved up so the students would have something to play on as soon as possible.

“The kids are going crazy for it. They just want to get on it,” Medina said Wednesday, as he watched dozens of students scrambling over the structure. “I hear so many ‘Thank you, Mr. Medina’ and get so many hugs for it. It’s good to see them excited.”

Isaac Sagedo, a first-grader, who was making his way down the slide, thought the new playground was going to be fun to play on.

“It’s good,” Isaac said. “I like the slide the best, but the bridge is fun, too. It’s not scary.”

Para-educator Whitney Salomon, one of several school employees helping to direct the mob of playing children, was happy they had a new playground to enjoy.

“The kids have been talking nonstop about it, watching the construction,” Salomon said.

• Contact Glenn Moore at 830-4252 or

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