Watch the grand opening of Brandon’s Beach, a destination playground in historic downtown Providence for children of all abilities dedicated in memory of Brandon Goldner.
Press release and photos from Downtown Providence Parks Conservancy:
Brandon’s Beach at Burnside Park Opens in Kennedy Plaza
Downtown Providence Parks Conservancy celebrates the grand opening of Brandon’s Beach, a new nautical-themed playground for children of all abilities in downtown Providence
Providence, RI – The Downtown Providence Parks Conservancy (DPPC), the public-private partnership responsible for stewardship and programming in Greater Kennedy Plaza, today celebrated the grand opening of Brandon’s Beach at Burnside Park, a new destination playground for children of all abilities located in the heart of historic Downtown Providence. Accompanied by City of Providence Mayor Jorge O. Elorza, Hasbro Chairman and CEO Brian Goldner and his wife Barbara, Congressman David Cicilline, and representatives from Kompan Play Equipment, DPPC Executive Director Cliff Wood officially unveiled the new playground in a ribbon cutting ceremony this morning. The grand opening celebration was open to the community and hundreds of children enjoyed the new playground.
The nautical theme, designed by Rhode Island native Tiffany Rodrigues for internationally renowned Kompan Play Equipment, was inspired by the Ocean State, as well as the historic Providence Harbor, where large ships would dock in the Providence River. The custom playground design, which features climbing structures unique to Burnside Park, is meant to evoke the look of a marina with nautically inspired poles and ropes.
The playground is appropriate for toddlers and young children of all abilities, and offers a wide variety of sensory-rich equipment, including pagoda bells, drums disguised as harbor piers, and music pipes. It also features the Supernova, Kompan’s most popular play piece globally, and classic items such as swings, a slide, and spinners.
The playground was built in memory of Brandon Goldner, and was made possible by the generosity of his family and friends.
“We wanted to honor our son in a way that would celebrate his life and the memories we created together, as a family,” said the Goldners. “We hope this playground will be a place for families to enjoy each other and make memories together,” said Barbara Goldner.
Brandon’s Beach marks a significant new investment in Burnside Park, and serves to enhance Greater Kennedy Plaza’s status as a welcoming city center and family destination. The playground complements the park’s historic setting with wrought iron fencing, classic style benches, complementary landscaping, and safety lighting. The intent was to create a unified area with seating which parents and children can enjoy together.
“The evolution of Greater Kennedy Plaza as a quality destination for families and visitors has taken a great leap forward with this newest investment in our downtown public spaces,” said Cliff Wood, Executive Director of the Providence Foundation and Downtown Providence Parks Conservancy. “We are grateful for the generosity of the Goldners, their friends and their family for helping us bring this amenity to the people of Rhode Island."
Recently, the DPPC also unveiled enhancements to the Imagination Center at Burnside Park, which were made possible by a generous grant from the Hasbro Children’s Fund. The Imagination Center was installed in Burnside Park in 2013 as part of a Heart of the Community Grant from Southwest Airlines. The project seeks to create a beautiful and welcoming home within the park for visitors to engage in an array of activities, including reading, creating, relaxing, and playing. It will work in concert with the new playground to establish Burnside Park as a compelling draw for families.
"Brandon's Beach is an awesome play area that will be enjoyed by children from across the city," said Mayor Jorge Elorza. "I thank the Goldner family for the special way they have added to the vibrancy of our downtown."
BRANDON’S BEACH AT BURNSIDE PARK, A DESTINATION PLAYGROUND
• Brandon’s Beach at Burnside Park is a new destination playground in downtown Providence for children of all abilities.
• On average, more than 5,000 children and families attend Downtown Providence Parks Conservancy’s family programming each year. The playground will serve thousands more families who are residents, commuters, and tourists outside of formal programming times throughout the year.
• Prior to the installation of Brandon’s Beach, there was no playground in downtown Providence. The pop-up playspace at Burnside Park’s Imagination Center demonstrated the demand for child-friendly amenities downtown. Burnside Park is the downtown core’s only significant green space.
• User groups include residents, tourists and the preschoolers of the nearby URI Feinstein Child Development Center.
• Brandon’s Beach at Burnside Park Playground represents a half-million dollar investment and is built in memory of Brandon Goldner, made possible by the generosity of his family and friends.
• The playground is enclosed by a fence and has enhanced lighting for security. The citywide parks curfew will be enforced (closed 9pm-7am) and additional security will be provided by the City of Providence.
• The playground will be maintained by the City of Providence Department of Parks in partnership with the Downtown Providence Parks Conservancy.
• Designed by RI native Tiffany Rodrigues, for KOMPAN Play Equipment, the concept was inspired by Rhode Island’s maritime history, and the nearby historic marina at Market Square in the Providence River. The central climbing structure reflects ship masts, lifeboats, maritime ropes and historic RI flags. The wood timber edging and musical drums evoke dock pilings. The playground design includes landscaping, benches, and wrought iron fencing which honor the characteristics of the historic park.
• This is a partnership with KOMPAN Play Equipment, the world’s #1 playground supplier. KOMPAN's innovative playground equipment encourages people of all ages to move and play every day, all around the world. Their unique designs are fun for all abilities.
• The playground offers a wide variety of sensory-rich equipment, including pagoda bells, drums, and music pipes. It also features the Supernova, Kompan’s most popular play piece globally, and classic items such as swings, a slide, and spinners.
• Playground design considered users of all ages and abilities, with a special focus on play functionality for 2-10 year-old children.
IMAGINATION CENTER UPGRADES
• Renovations and upgrades to the Imagination Center at Burnside Park were made possible by a generous grant from the Hasbro Children’s Fund. The project creates a beautiful and welcoming home within the park for visitors to engage in an array of activities, including reading, relaxing, and playing. It works in concert with the new playground to establish Burnside Park as a compelling draw for families.
• Improvements have transformed the exterior and interior of the Imagination Center. An expanded deck and awning increase its use as a stage for performances, workshops, classes, and events. Interior finishing provides a versatile and functional indoor space across three seasons.
• New amenities such as a film screening system, game tables, and flexible seating make this a destination facility for events, and a draw for families and convening groups.
• Summer programming at the Imagination Center, funded by the Hasbro Children’s Fund grant, includes Into the World of a Book, which encompasses Kidoinfo Storytime & Art in the Park; Game Days, featuring Hasbro games such as JENGA, SCRABBLE, CONNECT 4, MONOPOLY, and more; the Open Air Reading Room; an Inspiration Theater, including new costumes and props kits for drop-in creative play programming; and expanded arts programming. Future plans include the addition of film-based programs, including screenings of children’s movies and workshops.