Giving used Lakewood play equipment “a second life”


The Rotary Club of Lakewood and the City of Lakewood are teaming up on an effort to refurbish, transport and install the old city playground equipment recently removed from Bolivar Park into a new home in an impoverished community of Matapalo, Costa Rica.

The effort will cost about $20,000 in volunteer donations. Fundraising will take place over the next few months, with the installation hopefully taking place this summer in Costa Rica.

The older play equipment was removed from Bolivar Park in 2016 when the city installed two new playgrounds at the park.

There’s no market in the U.S. for used playground equipment. Some parts can be recycled, others are just treated as trash and sent to a landfill. That’s a shame when the playground equipment may be old but is still very useable.


Well, there’s a non-profit group called Kids Around The World that refurbishes old American playground equipment, and then transports and installs it in impoverished communities around the world. This gives kids in those poorer communities the chance to play and expand their imaginations on colorful and still useable play equipment…usually the first playground they’ve ever experienced.

The Rotary Club is taking the lead in Lakewood in this worthwhile endeavor to bring smiles, laughter and creative play to the kids of an economically disadvantaged community in another part of the world. The City of Lakewood has donated the used Bolivar play equipment to the cause and is providing other support.

Much of the effort will be carried out by volunteers, but the Rotary Club and Kids Around The World need to raise $20,000 to pay for the professional refurbishment, transportation and installation of the Bolivar play equipment.

Please consider any help you can provide. You can make a tax-deductible donation online at or by mailing a check made out to “Rotary Club of Lakewood” to:

Rotary Club

c/o Lakewood City Hall

5050 Clark Ave.

Lakewood, CA 90712

Feel free to call Lakewood City Hall at 562-866-9771, extension 2402 with any questions.