Jessy’s Garden receives improved play structure thanks to Prince Albert Optimist Club

Prince Albert Optimist Club Photo (L to R) President Elect Chris Dansereau, Past President Les Cragg, VP John Truba, and VP Dave Markling with the new play structure for Jessy's Garden.

Jessy’s Garden, located east of Prince Albert, has an improved play structure thanks to the Prince Albert Optimist Club.

The Optimist Club came to install the new play structure last week. John Truba, one of the club’s two vice presidents, said they moved quickly after learning about the garden’s need.

“Once we received it, we discussed it and we thought it was an excellent project that we could take on,” Truba said. “We acquired (equipment) in the city. We had to dismantle it.

Truba said the project checked all of the boxes for the Optimist Club.

“I think we were actually pretty excited to become involved in this project because that’s exactly what we do. We help where there’s a need and especially when it involves kids,” Truba said.

Jessy’s Garden is a Memorial Community Garden, located 20 kilometres east of Prince Albert on Highway 302 East. They make fresh, locally grown, pesticide-free produce affordable for everyone, regardless of income level.

The playground equipment was gently used. Club volunteers dismantled it, transported it to the garden, and reassembled it on-site.

Truba said the new play structure will be a great improvement on what was already there.

“It is very nice. It’s got many activities on it. There’s a tube slide, a regular slide, three swings, monkey bars, tower and the lookout. It’s an excellent structure for the kids to play on, for sure.”

Prince Albert Optimist Club Photo (L to R)VP Dave Markling , Past President Les Cragg, VP John Truba, VP Dave Markling with the new play structure for Jessy’s Garden.

Truba said they received the request from one of the volunteers for Jessy’s Garden for a play structure that improved on what was already there. Previously, the garden only had a few swings and other basic pieces for visiting children.

In a Facebook post, Jessy’s Garden co-owner Bonny Sanderson thanked the volunteers for making it come together as well as the Club.

“Thank you Prince Albert Optimist Club for making this happen,” the post reads. “Mel (Sanderson) and I are still in shock, this set is safe and secure.”

Overall, Truba was happy to see everything work out.

“At the end, everything came together and worked out good,” Truba said. “The structure is good and sound, and hopefully it will last for many years.”

Bonny and Mel Sanderson created Jessy’s Garden in remembrance of their daughter who committed suicide in 2008 at the age of 21. The garden supplies organic produce for non-profit organizations that work with vulnerable people and families. Residents can also pick vegetables for $10/bag.

The venue also provides opportunities for Prince Albert students to enjoy new experiences through the Garden Learning Program.