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WaMu and KaBOOM! to Host Design Day for New Playground on Chicago's South Side

Local children's dreams and drawings to create blueprint for new

community playground at The Children's Center Inc.


WHAT:    WaMu and organizers from KaBOOM! will host a Design Day for
          children and families served by local non-profit The
          Children's Center Inc. to begin planning a brand new
          playground for their south side neighborhood. Children from
          the community will put crayon to paper to brainstorm and
          draw their dream playgrounds, which will ultimately become a
          reality. Elements from the children's drawings will be
          incorporated into the final design for the new playground,
          which will be built on September 20th by 200 volunteers from
          WaMu and the community partners. Once the children have
          submitted their ideas, a playground planning committee will
          work for eight weeks to create playground blueprints and
          prepare for the construction of the playground.

         Chicago's build will be the eighth of ten cities that will
          receive new playgrounds as part of a national partnership
          between WaMu and KaBOOM!, which will create new, safe places
          to play for thousands of children during 2008. Additional
          locations include Atlanta, San Antonio, Chatsworth, Calif.,
          Chicago, Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco
          Jacksonville, Florida, Seattle and Dallas.

WHERE:   The Children's Center, Inc.
         12803 S. Halsted Street, Chicago, IL

WHEN:    Tuesday, July 15
         2 p.m. - 3 p.m. (Children's drawing session)

VISUALS: -- Community children drawing and brainstorming their dream
          playgrounds (children available for interviews)
         -- "Before" shots of the playground site
         -- Program partners and community volunteers sharing ideas to
          plan dream playground

About Washington Mutual, Inc.

WaMu, through its subsidiaries, is one of the nation's leading consumer and small business banks. At Mar. 31, 2008, WaMu and its subsidiaries had assets of $319.67 billion. The company has a history dating back to 1889 and its subsidiary banks currently operate approximately 2,500 consumer and small business banking stores throughout the nation. WaMu's press releases are available at

About KaBOOM!

KaBOOM! is a national non-profit organization that envisions a great place to play within walking distance of every child in America. Since 1995, KaBOOM! has used its innovative community-build model to bring together business and community interests to construct more than 1,400 new playgrounds, skateparks, sports fields and ice rinks across North America. KaBOOM! also offers a variety of resources, including an online community, regional and national trainings, grants, publications and the KaBOOM! National Campaign for Play, which includes Playful City USA and the Playmaker Network - a national network of individual advocates for play. Headquartered in Washington, D.C., KaBOOM! also has offices in Chicago and San Mateo, Calif. For more information, visit

About The Children's Center, Inc.

The Children's Center, Inc. is a non-profit organization serving over 35,000 children annually in the Chicago metro area. Founded in 1977, this organization has worked tirelessly to build community by focusing on the education and well-being of the children they serve. The center is located in a residential neighborhood that offers services within walking distance of the families in their community. The Children's Center continually offers new opportunities to families and children by nurturing and developing relationships with community members and local organizations.


             Shane Winn, 312-429-3052
             Missy Latham, 214-691-0513
             Mike Vietti, 202-464-6076

    SOURCE: WaMu