Playground in the works for popular Helena park

Phil Drake

The Lewis and Clark County Commissioners have approved construction of a playground to be paid for by a youth baseball league and a service organization at a park that serves as a busy hub of activity for Helena-area kids.

“This is how public and private partnerships are supposed to work,” Commissioner Jim McCormick said at last week’s meeting about the playground expected to be installed at the Bob Ryan/Helena Exchange Park, near the Lewis and Clark Fairgrounds at West Custer Avenue and Henderson Street.

The Helena Babe Ruth Baseball Association and Kiwanis Club of Helena are nearing their goal of raising $40,000 for a playground that will be compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act and shielded with protective netting to protect kids from the occasional errant foul balls that may come from the nearby baseball fields.

Officials say they are within $7,000 to $10,000 from their goal.

“We are super close,” said Alvaro Freyre, chair of the Kiwanis Club of Helena park committee and past president.

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