Community members already are using the 0.2-mile asphalt track around the playground at Sacred Heart of Jesus School in Wadsworth, even though it still needs to be striped, Principal Bill Adams said.
The Wadsworth Planning Commission approved plans for the track Aug. 11. Mayor Robin Laubaugh said even though the property already is used for recreation, the school needed approval because the playground is located in a residential zone.
Construction on the 9-foot-wide track began the next day and was finished by Aug. 15.
The track was funded by Wadsworth Home Youth School, a group of parent volunteers who raise money for the school.
Adams said the track was put in to encourage the school’s 250 students to stay physically fit.
“We’ve got a lot of kids that walk around on the playground instead of participating in games on the equipment, and we thought it would be a great opportunity,” he said.
The track is one of several projects the school completed over the summer to improve the playground area.
Adams said a memorial pavilion was donated to the school by friends and children of the late Joe and Lillian Buccitelli, parishioners of Sacred Heart Catholic Church.
Adams said the Buccitellis, of Wadsworth, were in their late 80s when they passed away on the same day during the last holiday season.
The Buccitellis’ six children, who are alumni of the school, donated to building the pavilion in their parents’ honor.
Louis and Joan Perry, friends of the Buccitellis, also donated to the pavilion.
Louis Perry, owner of the Louis Perry & Associates architectural firm in Wadsworth, designed the pavilion.
Some of the brick blocks on the floor of the pavilion have phrases in several different languages and biblical verses to promote the school’s educational practices.
Jamie Craddock, owner of J. Craddock Construction in Wadsworth and father of a Sacred Heart student, built the pavilion.
A dedication and memorial ceremony was held July 14 in the pavilion.
Adams said the playground also has a small playing field inside the track that had to be leveled over the summer.
“The ground was very uneven and we had to cut some trees down, too,” he said.
The school also put in four new picnic tables outside the track.
All that’s left to do for the improvements, Adams said, is to add some features to the playground equipment.
Adams said he was glad the majority of the outdoor projects were finished before the start of school this week.
Contact reporter Katie Anderson at (330) 721-4012 or firstname.lastname@example.org.