New swing a hit at Indian Foothills Park

Thursday, March 3, 2016
Alesi Robbins, 2, enjoys the new expression swing at Indian Foothills Park with adult family friend Craig McDaniel Thursday, March 3. (Arron Hustead/Democrat-News)

A new expression swing installed at Indian Foothills Park has been a big hit with the public, according to discussion at the Marshall Parks and Recreation meeting Wednesday, March 2.

An expression swing allows an adult to swing with a small child or toddler. The adult sits on a normal bench swing with a bar that wraps around above, ending with a booster seating, facing in the opposite direction. This allows the adult and child to face each other and maintain eye contact while enjoying play time together.

The swing takes up an entire bay on its own, meaning that some of the park's other swings had to be reorganized to make room for the new addition when it was installed Friday, Feb. 26.

"We had some employees come out on Saturday, and they said there was a waiting line to get on it," Parks Director Jeff Stubblefield said. "It really is a neat deal."

Stubblefield reported he was currently considering locations to place a second expression swing, this time likely in a frame by itself. Just the swing itself costs an estimated $1,500 while a swing with its own frame would cost $2,500.

"I talked to people last week at the [Missouri Parks and Recreation] conference, that I put one in, and they said, 'You're going to need at least another one, if not more,'" Stubblefield said.

Preparing a new location for another swing will involve locating flat ground and spreading mulch to meet fall-zone requirements.

"One of the things I hear... is it's so wonderful because you can have your younger kid playing, you can watch the older kid playing," Board Vice President Wayne Crawford said. "They're confined there. It just gives you a space that really works well."

No timetable was discussed for how quickly a second swing would be installed.

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