Squiggles, the Dragon

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Mary Anne Porto writes, After visiting the outdoor artwork pieces at the Arvada Center, I definitely appreciated Squiggles the Dragon the most.

After visiting the outdoor artwork pieces at the Arvada Center, I definitely appreciated Squiggles the Dragon the most. Squiggles is a concrete dragon sculpture designed by Bill Gian. This dragon allows safe play for children and is wheel chair accessible. For children with difficulty seeing, it’s easy to find Squiggles with all the textured tactile scales created by kids. It is also easy to find the trash cans that tell funny phrases when you push them open. They encourage kids to pick up their messes. Picnic tables around the “seasaurus” are accessible. The ground is a secure protective rubber surface that is soft enough to fall safely on, but not too soft that you can’t go on it with a wheel chair. Fins connected to Squiggles are a creative way to climb. Unlike in other playgrounds, there are no stairs. Hidden hoses in Squiggles’ mouth, nose, fins, and tail spray mist every five minutes. “We have a lot of programs for handicapped children, so we wanted a playground for them and other kids as well,” Hillary Olson, arts day coordinator said. “Like the outdoor artwork for the adults, it’s important that kids see (and get to play on) artwork that is important to themselves.” Squiggles is a lovable dragon for children four to twelve. Spinning metal sculptures also designed by Bill Gian surrounding Squiggles enable interactive play for three to ten year olds. The park includes a round play area with animal heads popping out. Concrete animal heads encourage imaginary games, jumping, climbing, and social play. Squiggles lets you use lots of your senses. This 343 foot long serpent encourages diverse activities. He has won awards for the Best Sea Monster in Westwood’s 1999 Best Denver Edition, and the State Starburst Award for Most Creative and Cost-effective use of Lottery Funds. If you’re looking for a great place to play, visit the collection of outdoor artwork at the Arvada Center, and see why kids of all kinds love Squiggles, the Dragon!

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