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Traverse City Playground

Traverse City Playground

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carters_kids_traversecityYoungsters have a new place to play in Elmwood Township.

A nautically themed playground, part of the revamped Greilickville Harbor Park, was dedicated Saturday with the help of Traverse City native and host of HGTV’s “Carter Can,” Carter Oosterhouse.

Families celebrated the opening of the new play area with a picnic lunch, face painting, balloon twisting demonstrations and posing for pictures with Oosterhouse while sand sculptor Ray Villafane created a massive aquatic scene on the beach.

Oosterhouse’s nonprofit foundation, Carter’s Kids, was instrumental in building the new playground, replacing the former play area where Oosterhouse says he played as a kid.

“I loved playing here when we were little kids. Coming back for this project has been a fantastic opportunity for me to give back to Traverse,” said Oosterhouse, whose group travels around the country building playgrounds, mostly in low income areas, to help keep kids active while fighting childhood obesity.

“Once we found out about this project, it all came together very quickly,” said Oosterhouse, noting that donations from the Ken and Faye Shaw family and the Art and Mary Schmuckal Foundation made the playground a reality.”