The Effingham Central Business Group held the Annual Downtown Food Fest in Effingham on Friday. According to event organizer Abby Zehner, the Food Fest is a fundraiser for numerous local causes.
The event featured 25 local businesses. One beneficiary of the Food Fest was the Harmony Playground Project. Zehner said that Central Business Group members vote on which local cause to support with the event.
Jamie Ludwig, who is leading efforts to raise funds for the project, said the idea of the Harmony Playground is to build a completely ADA accessible play space in Effingham.
The Harmony Playground Project began when a local mom, Emily Drake, went to the Effingham Park District to ask that an accessible swing set be constructed for the benefit of her daughter Lily and other children with special needs.
Fundraising for the construction of the playground has been ongoing, and while Ludwig could not provide an exact figure on how much money has been raised thus far, she said that things were going well. The group recently raised $35,000 in ticket sales in a charity car raffle. Once the playground is built, the Effingham Park District will take over maintenance.
Completion of Harmony Playground will be contingent on how long it takes to hit funding goals. Ludwig said the group would also be looking into applying for state and federal grants in the near future.
For more information on Harmony Playground visit their Facebook page.