Big improvements continue at Arlington’s Haller Park

ARLINGTON — The first part of what is likely to become a complete renovation of Haller Park is scheduled to open in three weeks.

Over the past few weeks, new playground equipment has been installed in the upper reaches of the park. A team of volunteers from the Rotary Club of Arlington have scheduled a work party June 7 to lay sod and mulch.

The play equipment will remain fenced off until that work has been done, city community and economic development director Paul Ellis said.

The equipment was bought by Rotary with the proceeds of its 2013 Great Stilly Duck Dash, said Cindy Huleatt, the president-elect of the club.

The Duck Dash, an annual rubber-duck race in the Stillaguamish River, brought in $116,000 from sponsorships and the sale of 18,000 tickets for the event, well above the average of 12,000 tickets for the event.

“We decided for our 25th anniversary to do something very special for the city,” Huleatt said. “Our money is all being put into playground equipment.”

The play equipment was to have been installed earlier, but the work was postponed because Reece Trucking, the contractor donating the earthwork for the site, was called out to help in the recovery of the Oso mudslide. Play Creationscq, the company that made the play equipment, donated a week’s worth of labor needed to put together and install the equipment.

The city is in the process of applying for grant money that will help pay for other improvements in the park.

At the top of the list is a new restroom facility and picnic shelter, which the city hopes to install in the summer of 2015, allowing the older restrooms to be removed.

“It’s old and in pretty poor condition, but it’s also within the flood area,” Ellis said.

The new play equipment and the site of the future restrooms are above the flood zone.

The city has $50,000 set aside and another $50,000 in matching funds from Snohomish County to pay for the restroom installation. It is hoped that grant money will make up the remaining $75,000 for the project.

Once the new restrooms are installed, the plan is to remove the old facility and the lower parking area and replace them with a lawn and possibly a stage for music or other community events, Ellis said.

Chris Winters: 425-374-4165; cwinters@heraldnet.com.

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