The steady arm of a crane lifted down a bright red fire engine, log and playhouse into a new outdoor play area Monday at the Paso Robles Children’s Museum.
The pieces are part of the museum’s new Hero’s Park exhibit, an interactive adventure area that includes a real antique fire truck built into a custom playhouse created by the woodworkers at Daniels Wood Land Inc. in Templeton.
Creation of the playhouse may even be featured on an upcoming episode of the “Redwood Kings,” Daniels Wood Land owners (and brothers) Ron and John Daniels’ reality TV show.
The Children’s Museum attraction will be unveiled to the public at a grand opening celebration from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Admission to the museum will be free during the event, courtesy of the Paso Robles Rotary Club.
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The playhouse is part of a summer-long project to revamp the museum’s outdoor space, which also included adding a fenced-in area, shade structure, picnic benches and native plants in place of the turf that once was there in an effort to save water.
“This interactive play area will encourage the children to learn and play in a fun and safe environment,” museum executive director Jennifer Smith said in a statement.
The entire $67,000 project was paid for with community donations raised in honor of museum co-founder, the late Tom Martin. Daniels Wood Land also donated about half the cost of the play structure, Smith said.
Fire trucks are a running theme at the museum because it’s housed in the former Paso Robles Volunteer Firehouse at 623 13th St.
The playhouse’s fire engine was donated by Paso Robles resident Alice Griselle, in memory of her father, Sherman Griselle of Paso Robles. And an antique firehouse bell was donated by Paso Robles residents Paul and Dorothy Deis in memory of their daughter, Anna Marie Deis of Los Osos, to celebrate her life by giving back to the community.
“What wonderful gifts we have received,” Smith said.