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Kingston city workers busy as Stage 3 reopening includes plenty of playgrounds

Happy Kingston kids as playgrounds reopen with Stage 3 underway. Mike Postovit/Global News

Parents don’t have to tell their kids to keep off the playground equipment anymore.

Most of the province moved into Stage 3 of reopening on Friday, meaning most businesses can reopen with a 50-person indoor limit, along with playgrounds, swimming pools and other recreational services.

The fun has begun at least for the kids.

Read more: Ontario reopening Stage 3: Gathering limit increasing as indoor dining, gyms permitted to reopen

“We’ve been working through this, we’ve been planning ahead of this, not just waiting for the day to come,” said Troy Stubinski, public works operations manager with the City of Kingston, who oversees the playgrounds along with his crew.

“We have in excess of 100 parks that have playgrounds and we have in excess of 200 structures within those parks.”

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Stubinski says city workers are going as fast as they can to bring the play structures back into use.

“We’re working with the resources we have, unfortunately this year we didn’t have any students which was a problem. So we’re working through with the staff we have,” Stubinski said.

“Staff is doing a very good job and very diligent about doing that work but it will take us a bit of time to work through all of the locations.”

Read more: Coronavirus: What you can and cannot do in Ontario amid Stage 3 of reopening

Anna Liebowitz was at Victoria Park just after 11:00 Friday morning, but unfortunately she and her two children were just a little too early.

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“We came here hoping the fence was down,” Liebowitz told Global News.

“It wasn’t down but we understand that today is the first day and we’re hoping to come back in a couple of days and use the equipment.”

The Victoria Park fencing was down a couple of hours after Global News spoke with Liebowitz. Sports fields have been open, and now it’s a case of the more the merrier — or at least up to 50, according to Stubinski.

“That limit on the amount of people that are allowed to gather has been increased. Our rec and leisure department is working on the booking process to work with our local groups to get bookings in place,” Stubinski said.

“But our fields are ready, open and available.”

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Not available are indoor recreation facilities, including arenas like the Invista Centre.

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