Playground Committee co-chairs in back
from left: Bethanne Olczak and Kathleen Lochel
their children: Madison Lochel, A.J. Olczak,Jr. and Nicholas Lochel
siblings: Do you want to build a playground?
Ralph DiGuiseppe III and Jennifer DiGuiseppe Melling
Using Common Cents with Pennies for the Playground
by Cate Murway

No child should be left inside…..Let them get out and play!
Playing outside is not just about letting off steam. It is a vital part of childhood that helps the youth develop physical strength, coordination and balance through imaginative, creative, exploratory and safe play.
An additional benefit is that outside play is often open-ended.  Children can learn through play to assess risks, master new skills and tackle new challenges.

Snyder-Girotti Elementary / Middle School PTA members, Bethanne M. [Martell] Olczak and Kathleen A. [Romano] Lochel are the co-chairs of the “Playground Committee”, working together with Shea [Wendowski] Cialella, who is also the Marketing Coordinator of the Lower Bucks Family YMCA. They are enthusiastically pioneering the program, through the PTA, to procure funds for a new play area.
Stationary equipment, such as climbing structures, swings and balance beams are beneficial to motor and social skills and increasing children’s physical activity levels and their energy expenditure is most valuable.
Crystal Jane [Winter] Newcomb, president of the PTA for the last three years, assists the committee in coordinating fundraising events. Crystal’s husband, David Paul is also involved in the youth athletics, coaching the Little League.  Their children Austin [13], McKenzie [8], and Hunter [6] attend Snyder-Girotti. “The playground was very small. The plans are for a bigger one with plenty of equipment for everyone and open ground with open space for running and playing.”

Co-chair Bethanne’s son, A.J., Jr. [8] stated, “The old playground was damaged and unsafe. Everything was un-sturdy.” His mom agreed, “The playground was deplorable.”
The new projections depict a bigger and better playground, closer to the building.

Co-chair Kathleen’s children, Nicholas [10] and Madison [6] are looking forward to using monkey bars, swings and slides during recess. Her youngest, Vincent [1] will soon be a willing and able participant.

Raising funds for functional design playground equipment with visual and classic appeal, in an amazing space where fun and safety are a priority, is a lot of work. And it is costly. Through various fundraising efforts and grants the committee is working diligently to accomplish this.
Unlike residential play sets, the commercial playground pieces also need to be anchored to the ground, with footings to be dug and concrete to be poured. Every post, slide bed, climber and other fixed play structure must be extra secure on safety surfacing. Superior materials, finishes and manufacturing processes ultimately mean lower maintenance costs.

Thank you to Penelope Fox Art, LLC, start-up funds were made available to them when Jina Dierolf donated her expertise, time and space for three adult paint sessions. Jina has committed to donate the proceeds and help as many times as possible with fundraising sessions.
The Designer Bag Bingo held at the Bristol Township Adult Activity Center last month was very successful. The event raised almost $10,000.
Mark your calendar. Next on the agenda is The “Park it for the Playground” Car Show and Picnic that will be held Saturday, June 7, 2014 with a rain date of Saturday June 14, 2014.
The cost is just $10.00 to register all American and foreign antiques and classics, plus new Corvettes, Camaros, Mustangs, T-Birds and Challengers for the show. Trophies will be awarded for “Best of Show” and 1st, 2nd and 3rd place “People's Choice”.
The proceeds will benefit the new Snyder-Girotti playground, so please reserve your spot promptly.
Registrations begin at 9:00 am on Saturday, June 7th, or pre-register online at
The event will be open to the public from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm at the Snyder-Girotti Elementary / Middle School located on 450 Beaver Street where all the vehicles will be shown on blacktop. 
Indoor restrooms, indoor and outdoor “picnic” food and seating are available. 
They will be hosting a 50-50 as well as vendor donated gift basket raffles. Or purchase a $5.00 chance to win the [4 ] Disneyland Resort Park Hopper® Tickets, permitting the winner to visit both Disney World Park and Disney Florida Adventure Park on the same day. Various crafts and merchandise [vendor tables are $25.00] will be displayed for sale to help secure additional funds for the playground.
Registration / Show coordinator, Mark Gesualdi will assist with car reservation questions. 215.788.8621

Discover some of the best ice cream and frozen yogurt in historic Bristol on the Delaware and help the Playground Committee ‘scoop up’ some extra funds all summer!
Bristol Blitz is offering part of their profits from their frozen treats for this fundraiser. Proprietor, Gary Paul will generously donate 20% of any “Playground portion” item purchased. So, order your choice of a frosty “playground portion” at their 800 Bristol Pike location on Route 13. 

Another future idea being “tossed” around is to collect pennies, a common ‘cents’ way to work toward the committee’s goal to “change” the playground area for the elementary school children.
Help support the Playground by ordering a Snyder- Girotti oval magnet, in your choice of red or gray background for only $3.00 per magnet, to display proudly on your car, locker or at home.
All monies secured from these PTA/ Playground Committee fundraisers will go directly to the Playground Fund. Join them on Facebook at

Corporate sponsorship opportunities are available. Sponsor a swing set.
Help keep the Snyder-Girotti students in motion!
Contact Bethanne Olczak  267.980.9513

Recommend a “Spotlight”. E-mail