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Amplatz Children’s Hospital playground named in honor of Vikings player John Sullivan

John Sullivan and Ashley Tarutis at the dedication ceremony for the Sullivan Playground at University of Minnesota Amplatz Children's Hospital.

John A. Sullivan, center for the Minnesota Vikings, is donating $150,000 to make a new University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital playground possible. To support the project, Vikings linebacker Chad Greenway has donated $25,000 through his Lead the Way Foundation, and the Minnesota Vikings have contributed the remaining $25,000 necessary for the $200,000 project. Sullivan announced his support at a dedication ceremony on October 30.

The newly named Sullivan Playground will be just outside University of Minnesota Amplatz Children’s Hospital and will serve patients and their siblings.

Working with Landscape Structures, a Minnesota company that designs playgrounds for children of all abilities, Amplatz Children’s Hospital child rehabilitation therapists and child-family life specialists selected a variety of activities and structures that are fun and appropriate for all children, regardless of age and medical condition.

The secure and private play space will incorporate therapeutic, sensory, and developmental elements as well as mix of climbing, discovery, sliding, and spinning activities.

It will also feature the first commercial outdoor slide ever made to accommodate children with IVs. The slide’s custom-designed posts and attachments will allow patients to climb Americans with Disabilities Act-approved stairs and go down the roller slide without disconnecting their medical devices.

The Sullivan Playground is scheduled to open next spring.

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