Find your place in Carly’s Clubhouse project Nov. 18

A community meeting about the Carly's Clubhouse project will be held Nov. 18 at Pelham City Hall from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. (Reporter Photo / Molly Davidson)

A community meeting about the Carly’s Clubhouse project will be held Nov. 18 at Pelham City Hall from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. (Reporter Photo / Molly Davidson)

By MOLLY DAVIDSON / Staff Writer

PELHAM—Learn how you can play a part in the creation of Carly’s Clubhouse during a Nov. 18 community meeting from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Pelham City Hall.

“It’s really just an open discussion about what you can do to help,” project organizer Dustin Chandler explained. “Everybody is welcome to help out.”

The meeting will cover the vision for Carly’s Clubhouse, a community-built, all-accessible and all-inclusive playground, and the opportunities available for volunteers.

Under the guidance of custom playground manufacturing company, Leathers and Associates, the large-scale project has been split into committees, each with specific tasks, such as fundraising, coordinating materials and providing food for volunteers.

Chandler said he is still looking for volunteers to lead the materials committee and daycare committee, but the most critical need at this stage in the project is fundraising.

“Our biggest need right now is for people to come out and show support and fundraise,” Chandler said. “That is really the most important thing.”

The 30,000-square-foot playground will include a wheelchair accessible merry-go-round and zip line, among other all-inclusive features, and will have a nearly $1 million budget, Chandler estimated.

“It’s putting things in there that the community wanted,” Chandler said. “Our children are worth every penny.”

The project will be funded through donations from the community. As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, donations can easily be made to Carly’s Clubhouse, and Chandler encouraged individuals to hold their own fundraisers, anything “from a lemonade stand to a gala.”

“It’s about coming together as a community,” Chandler said. “We want children and our youth to be involved in fundraising as well. It’s really important to get the children involved too, to teach them about community.”

Chandler emphasized community does not just mean Pelham. As the first all-inclusive playground of its kind in Alabama, Chandler said he hopes to see families from surrounding areas enjoy Carly’s Clubhouse as well. Tatum’s Garden, another Leathers and Associates all-inclusive playground in Salinas, Calif., draws numerous families to the city each week.

“It has brought in 1,500 families per week who are not from Salinas to that playground,” Chandler said, noting he hopes to see Carly’s Clubhouse do the same.