Menifee Honored As Playful City USA

MENIFEE – The city of Menifee announced last week that it has been designated as a “2017 Playful City USA” community, one of only 31 California cities to be honored this year. Playful City USA honors cities and towns across the country for putting the needs of families first, so children can learn, grow and develop important life skills.

These communities are recognized for transforming ordinary places into playful spaces and using play as a solution to the challenges facing their residents.

The 2017 Playful City USA recognition includes 258 communities from Virginia to California that make it as easy as possible for children to play. In total, these communities feature more than 14,000 safe and engaging play spaces, which serve more than 4 million children nationwide.

“The city of Menifee works hard to provide outstanding classes, clean and safe parks and community programs to encourage Menifee residents to be active and enjoy the beautiful city in which we live,” said Menifee Mayor Neil R. Winter. “We are proud to receive this designation and we’re motivated to continue building a strong, active community in Menifee.”

Since its incorporation in 2008, the city of Menifee has worked to advance play in the community through a variety of partnerships, policies and programs, including its Living Healthy, Building Community project.

Additionally, the city is committed to improving resident’s quality of life by providing safe and well-maintained parks and dedicated open spaces for its residents now and in the future. On March 1, the city reopened the Audie Murphy Skate Park and introduced the “Skates & Sounds” event.

Through a partnership with DSTNY Project, a faith-based organization committed to economic development and building community, the new Skates & Sounds event is offered at the Skate Park on a monthly basis featuring skate and scooter competitions, prizes for skate board and scooter participants, extra helmets, participation waivers and music.

Part of investing in its youth, Menifee schools and city officials believe it is never too early to introduce STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) skills to children. To this end, Menifee offers Summer Camp and Tiny Tots Pre-school that incorporate STEM activities to help children slowly adjust to the school setting and improve their learning readiness.

To create a playful environment with the input of its youth, Menifee collaborates with members of the Youth Advisory Committee, who are a critical component of city events and programs, and the city’s efforts to encourage play. In August 2016, the Menifee Youth Advisory Committee was recognized in the Western City-League of California Cities magazine as winners of the Ruth Vreeland Award for Engaging Youth in Government 2015 Helen Putnam Award Program.

“It’s a huge honor to be named a Playful City USA,” said Interim City Manager Ron Bradley. “It not only validates the many programs staff is implementing to encourage Menifee residents to get outside and be active, receiving this designation makes the city eligible to apply for large grants to help fund more programs and initiatives to promote an active youth community.”

Menifee is one of only 258 cities nationwide recognized as a Playful City USA community by KaBOOM!, a national nonprofit that creates places to play, inspires communities to promote and support play and works to drive the national discussion about the importance of play in fostering healthy and productive lives. Since 1996, KaBOOM! has collaborated with partners to build, open or improve nearly 16,700 playgrounds, engaged more than 1 million volunteers and served 8.5 million children.

For more about the Playful City USA program, visit >

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