The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

$25,000 grant to assist in Sunset Park renovations


Submitted Photo

PLAYGROUND EQUIPMENT is shown at Sunset Road Park in Ironwood Township. The township is in the running for a $25,000 grant to help with a park renovation project through online voting.

IRONWOOD - Ironwood Township is in the running for a $25,000 grant to assist with the Sunset Road Park renovation project.

The township is one of 12 finalists in the Bridgestone Rethink Green contest, after submitting phase 1 of the park renovation project. The winner is solely based on Internet voting.

Voting is from April 1-30, and according to the Bridgestone website, the winner will be announced in late May.

Township treasurer Jyl Olson-DeRosso said township employees are spreading the word.

"I'm going on the radio (today), we've contacted the Daily Globe and we're posting on social media," Olson-DeRosso said. "We need people to go and vote once a day for 30 days to help us."

Some of the other projects are in Alabama, Tennessee, North Carolina, Nebraska, Kansas and Louisiana.

Monroe, Mich., also has a project in the contest.

"Some of these projects are for schools," Olson-DeRosso. "People can go online and vote right from their phones. On day two, some already had 2,000 votes. We need all the help we can get."

Phase 1 of the Sunset Road Park project includes installing new playground equipment to meet Americans with Disabilities Act standards and construction of a paved trail to provide access to park and playground equipment.

The Ironwood Township Board of Trustees approved committing $20,000 for phase one, replacing only a portion of the playground equipment. If the township receives the grant, funding will pay off the remaining balance on the equipment.

The park also has a softball field, dual tennis courts, basketball court, horseshoe pits and access trails and stairs from the township office parking lot.

Future plans for the park include construction of a paved trail around the perimeter of the park, updating the basketball and tennis courts, making improvements to the softball field, installing lighting in the park, constructing a pavilion with restrooms and planting trees.

Township resident Rudy Grbavcich handled the grant application.

"He had seen the contest through his job, and he thought of us," Olson-DeRosso said. "It's wonderful that Rudy did this, and we can't thank him enough. It's a lot of work putting this together, and for a resident to volunteer to take this on, it's just awesome."

To cast a vote in the Bridgestone Rethink Green contest, visit


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