THE Rotary Club of Saipan on Wednesday held a soft opening of Kagman Community Family Park and planted trees in the area.
With club president Thomas Thornburgh and local Rotarians were visiting Rotarians from International District 2750, and Interact Club members of Kagman High School.
In an interview, Thornburgh said phase II of the project, which includes a perimeter fence, may not be completed this year because their grant request has been denied.
He said they will apply for a grant again next year.
The construction of the project, which is located between the Kagman Community Center and the fire station, started early this year.
Thornburgh said he and Division of Parks and Recreation Director Eli Cabrera have discussed the maintenance of the park, adding they will probably come up with a memorandum of understanding for its upkeep.
Kagman High School principal Laila Staffler said the park will benefit the community, especially the youth.
“It will definitely give young people a place to go where they can do positive things,” she said. There’s a recreation area in Kagman II, but not all people can go there, she added.
“We are grateful to the Rotary Club for giving us this community park to promote health and wellness.”
Staffler said the Rotary Club of Saipan has been very active in serving the community, and has been successful in mentoring high school students through the Interact Club.
“The students are able to give back in a very big way that they might not have had a chance to do before,” she said.
Those who will be using the facility, Staffler said, should respect this “highly valued project.”
She added, “This is part of our Kagman home, so if you are part of the Kagman community treat this the way you would treat your home.”
Rep. Frank Aguon, for his part, also urged the community in Kagman to value and keep the park clean.
“I hope the parents will continue to guide the youth and help prevent vandalism. I am hoping the community will do its part to protect this project.”
He said the project is very laudable as he thanked the Rotary Club of Saipan for initiating it.
Aguon said he and Rep. Lorenzo Deleon Guerrero are now organizing basketball teams for a tournament that will be held at the new park.
“We already have two teams and hope to get more players and sponsors,” he said, adding that the youth in Kagman are very active in sports.
Robert Vicente, construction foreman of Northpac Corp., said they have completed the installation of new bleachers including anchors, the fiber reinforcement of the concrete slab at the basketball court, the installation of a solar light post and tree-stump steps as well as the children’s playground.
Moreover, he said the project includes a ponding basin and a temporary erosion-control plan.
The event was attended by visiting Rotary International District 2750 Gov. Masamori Sawatari of the Rotary Club of Tokyo, Musashi Fuchu, district secretary Kuniyoshi Hirai, district vice secretary Yoshiko Shiina, district secretary general Yushiro Nohata, and assistant district Gov. Wayne Santos of Guam.
Source: Marianas Variety : http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/97974-rotary-club-of-saipan-holds-soft-opening-tree-planting-at-kagman-children-s-park