Recess Is Back

New Market installs new STEAM Playground after year-long fundraising effort


NEW MARKET — New Market Elementary School recently completed Phase 1 of its STEAM Playground Project.

Through student fundraising efforts, and the generosity of business and community sponsors, nearly $105,000 has been raised for the project over the last year.

Phase 1 included the replacement of the elementary playground structure and the addition of a fitness course, basketball goals, funnel ball, soccer goals and new balls and equipment. Phase 2, which is scheduled to be completed in the fall of 2022, will replace the primary playground structure and make updates to the School Garden and Outdoor Learning Center. Finally, Phase 3 will include the purchase of additional STEAM equipment.

“I think it really shows the students the value of the hard work they’ve put in. They’ve worked to come up with different fundraisers, different community events, participated in different opportunities, and they’re finally see all that pay off,” Principal Brittany Cooper said. “It really instills a sense of work ethic, and they’re just so excited to be out there and be playing on the equipment and see their friends out there.”

A Planning Committee composed of parents, staff members and community stakeholders researched equipment and technology for the playground.

Business and community sponsors include: Diamond sponsors, Montgomery County Community Foundation, New Market Elementary PTO, and anonymous donors; Gold sponsor, Bayer Fund; Silver sponsor, Parke County REMC; Bronze sponsors, Cale and LaCinda Stephens, Hoosier Heartland State Bank, Marathon Petroleum Company, The Blackburn Giving Fund, and Francis & Mount.

Additional support was received from Walden Transport & Recycle, Kenny and Lori Shaver, Sam Shelton and Scott Lowe.