A Time to Help Comes Through for SAY Play

March 28, 2022

It was A Time to Help’s version of a three-ring circus — something happening here, there, everywhere.

There was the team of heavy-lifters, the volunteers who teamed together and brought up dozens of old furniture pieces and other items from the basement at the SAY Play Center at Lipke Park on Saturday, March 26. Nearby, there was another group — let’s call them the inside crew — who scrubbed the youth development center’s kitchen and brushed a fresh coat of paint on doors and trim. And, finally, there was the team of picker-uppers who trudged outside and filled countless garbage bags with trash that had thawed along the fence line and on the football field.

A good spring clean up, was what it was.

“Oh my goodness!’’ said Herb Hayden, operations director at SAY Play. “There was a number of great moments for me today. A Time to Help comes through, they just ‘do.’’’

For ATTH newcomer Steve Weberman, who has volunteered for the last two years at the call center for SAY Detroit’s annual Radiothon, the project hit home on so many levels.

“First of all, I loved learning about the history of the place,’’ Weberman said of Lipke Park. “It was fascinating. And, I loved the work.’’

For another ATTH newcomer, Sue Leslie, volunteering for Saturday’s project was a personal journey. She grew up a few blocks from Lipke Park, located on Detroit’s northeast side, before she moved with her mother to Ann Arbor in the mid-1970s.

“I’m here today because of her,’’ Leslie said. “I remember this place, the brick building, and the field. When I was 7, I remember flying a kite that had so many holes in it it was patched with Band-Aids. I’m very grateful to be here today, so meaningful to me.’’

And we were so happy to have you.

ATTH’s next project is April 22-23 in Hamtramck. More information — and registration — will be posted soon.