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Today's Family Magazine

Clark Family Activity and Learning Center

The Deepwood Foundation, in partnership with the Lake County Board of Developmental Disabilities/Deepwood, celebrates the opening of the Clark Family Activity and Learning Center. The all-inclusive accessible playground is located at Broadmoor School, 8090 Broadmoor Road in Mentor 

The project has been in development for the past year and a half and is funded from private sponsors and donations within the community to the Deepwood Foundation.  The playground is available for all individuals with developmental disabilities who are eligible for services through the Lake County Board of Developmental Disabilities.  Development consists of three phases; the initial two phases are now complete.  Construction of phase 3 will begin in spring 2022.  

”Children benefit in many ways from outdoor play.  However, not all children have the ability to play on existing playgrounds due to physical or developmental disabilities,” said Rikke Coach, executive director of The Deepwood Foundation.  

“Through the creativity and inspiration of the Broadmoor School teachers, committee members and CT Consultants, we have developed an accessible learning center that has a shelter to protect students from weather elements, and is bordered with accessible gardening planters so that students can participate in gardening and growing plants from seed.  The Rotary Club of Mentor provided and installed the planters.”  

Phase 2 features the activity center/playground, which includes all-accessible equipment, along with auditory and visual components so that everyone can be included in the fun and activity.  The activity center will offer safe, endless play opportunities for individuals of all ages and all abilities in one accessible spot.

“Outdoor play stimulates speech, cognition, gross motor skills, fine motor skills and social skills more efficiently than any other method of instruction,” said Linda DeRosa, LCBDD children’s service’s director/Broadmoor principal.  “The play space will also promote self-empowerment and imaginative play for all kids, while allowing children with disabilities to play safely alongside their peers.”

The project will eventually include phase 3 –– The Leisure Center –– which is planned to be a calming place with activities such as bocce, shuffleboard, swings, and picnic shelters for older students and adults. 

For more than 25 years, The Deepwood Foundation has been committed to enriching the lives of all people with intellectual and developmental disabilities through participation in activities, education, and lifelong inclusion. 

Those interested in learning more about the Lake County Board of Developmental Disabilities/Deepwood’s programs and services can visit or connect on social media. Learn more about the Deepwood Foundation at