Resurrection of Our Lord Church in Rhawnhurst officially unveiled its new playground Thursday at Shelmire Avenue and Large Street.
The effort to build and fund the playground was led by parishioners John and Theresa Guinan, who raised more than $20,000 to construct the playground in memory of their son Patrick, who died last year at age 37.
Patrick’s Playground includes a large playground piece with slides, a small rock climbing wall, tires and an outdoor library. It abuts Resurrection Regional Catholic School.
“Today has been a longtime dream of Resurrection Regional,” said Mary Toczylowski, a retired kindergarten teacher who helped with the project. “Even before my time, teachers have been talking about fixing up the mud yard, which was its old name.”
The Rev. Jim DeGrassa, Resurrection’s pastor, led a blessing of playground, surrounded by many of the younger students who have begun using it.
Tenth District Councilman Brian O’Neill, who attended the ribbon-cutting, said he was impressed by the work of the Guinans and parish to fund the project.
“This city block stands out in the whole city as just the picture of what everyone wishes their church and their bedrock was in their neighborhood,” he said. “This is the center of the universe for Rhawnhurst.”
Toczylowski said a brick campaign, where donors can have names engraved at the playground, will kick off soon to raise money for additional improvements to the area. ••