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Belmont

Celebration at Joey’s Park on Saturday

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Organizers of a campaign to refurbish Joey’s Park will host a “then-and-now” celebration at the park on Saturday. The event, which runs from 5 to 7 p.m., will feature food, music, and activities for children while publicizing the group’s online auction and other fund-raising efforts on behalf of the 24-year-old facility, said Diane Miller, Friends of Joey’s Park cochairwoman. Organizers will display photos of local children playing in the park over the years, and pictures drawn by Belmont students showing their ideas for the new park, and invite guests to sign a special memory book. Organizers said they will also share news about the time capsule that was buried somewhere on the grounds when the playground was built in 1989 and has yet to be found. The park was built in memory of a local boy who died at 12 years old from cystic fibrosis. It closed briefly in 2011 after a safety review raised concerns, and reopened on a temporary basis after some play equipment was removed. Now, community members are using funds that they have been raising to renovate the playground. The brand new facility was designed by students at the elementary school Joey attended, and is being constructed by Belmont residents in an old-fashioned community barn-raising. The total cost is estimated at around $380,000; supporters had raised about $226,000 at the end of last month, in addition to $100,000 in Community Preservation Act funds that recently won Town Meeting approval. The current playground will be demolished in August, and the community build has been slated for Oct. 9 through 14, Miller said. For more information on the park and playground, visit www.joeyspark.org.

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