Volunteers hope to raise the money needed for the Orchard Park School District's share of playgrounds and synthetic turf by February -- an ambitious schedule for coming up with almost $700,000.
District voters approved the playgrounds and turf in May, as part of a $24 million capital project.
The $2.29 million for the playgrounds and turf can be spent only if the community raises the district's share, $687,600, by next Sept. 30, said Jeffrey Petrus, assistant superintendent for administration and personnel. State aid would cover the rest.
But if the playgrounds and new field are to be ready for next fall, the money has to be raised this winter. The state Education Department then can review the project.
Each of the four elementary schools started fund drives for playground equipment, and the Orchard Park Quaker Athletic Foundation has been established to raise $528,000 for the $1.8 million field.
The foundation has raised about $25,000, said its president, Daryl P. Ciambella, and plans to solicit businesses, alumni and individuals.
A $35,000 donor will receive recognition on the scoreboard, and a company donating $15,000 will get an engraved granite bench along the walkway to the field.
Donations of $7,500 will be recognized by plaques in front of specially planted trees. Wall plaques and granite and cobblestone pavers will recognize smaller donations.