Volunteers needed to save Children’s WonderlandWritten by Kristen Criswell | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Lucas County Commissioner Ben Konop and radio personality Andrew “Z” Zepeda are asking the community to volunteer and help save Children’s Wonderland.
“We’re giving the community the opportunity that if you care about it that much come forward and help. Donate your time. If not that will be the end of it,” Zepeda said. “It’s in your court. People that were outraged about Children’s Wonderland not being here we’re giving them an opportunity to step forward and save it.”
Volunteers are needed to help set up, move and run Children’s Wonderland. The project would require 50 to 100 volunteers to set up if the display would open by Dec. 3, Zepeda said.
Konop and Zepeda have arranged a tentative location, management deal and a partnership with a non-profit organization to receive all the proceeds.
“There has been an outcry from the community saying we want to keep Children’s Wonderland around. This would be the first year we don’t have it for our kids to go to,” Zepeda said. “People say it’s cheesy it’s this or that. To a three year old kid who sees the old woman in the shoe display it’s not cheesy, it’s a great impression.”
The project has a 24-hour time frame to know if enough volunteers are recruited, Zepeda said.
Konop hopes to bring this to the commissioners meeting Tuesday morning. The commissioners would have to vote to empower the county administrator to negotiate a management agreement with the non-profit entity, Konop said.
The Toledo Seagate Food Bank would be the recipient of any proceeds. Admission would also be structured so people who bring a food donation would get reduced admission cost.
The Children’s Wonderland operated at a $2,500 loss last year so the pair wanted to make sure if they joined up with a non-profit something could be gained by the community.
“At least if you bring in food, there’s something tangible the charity can take back with them,” Zepeda said.
Children’s Wonderland has been a holiday tradition in Lucas County for 45 years.
Konop voted no last year to the closing of Children’s Wonderland.
“[Children’s Wonderland] is an important thing in our community’s quality of life,” Konop said. “It’s something that families have gone to year after year.”
Individuals interested in volunteering should e-mail email@example.com.