New life-size foosball court at Butler Elementary

By Matthew McCully

When elementary schools reopened with strict social distancing measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, there was a lot of concern about what a day would be like for students without gymnasiums and playgrounds available. That’s not a problem at Butler Elementary, which has a new life-size foosball court in the schoolyard thanks to some creative thinking and a group of volunteers from Butler’s Home and School Association.
“The kids are having fun,” commented parent Anne-Lise Kyling, one of the masterminds behind the foosball table. “This is a year they won’t forget.” Kyling and another parent Annie Bourgea came up with the idea and then started planning how to get the court built. “We wanted to build it to last,” Kyling said, so they spared no expense.
Sponsors for the project included Bonduelle Canada for the super cool vintage red pallets, Copeaux Kyling inc. for the wood, ABS pipes, screws, ­reflective tape, door hinges, hockey nets and pizza & refreshments for lunch for all volunteers, Atelier Bourgea (for the galvanized pipes, flanges and pallet transport, and Chris Gasser who provided the steel rods.
Volunteers Yanick Bourdeau, Benoit Gagnon, Butler Principal Christopher Morgan and Chris Gasser helped with the construction of the court, along with help from Nicole Fischer Gasser, Jennifer Galipeau, Kayla Colosimo and Tiffany Marini Zelis.
It was done in a day, Kyling said. They got started at 9:30 a.m. on Sunday and were done by 3 p.m.
A handful of kids spent the day hauling wood, pipes, drilling holes, and of course trying it out when it was built.
Kyling said she was apprehensive about sending her kids back to school. “At first we weren’t sure, but they are asking every day to go back,” she said. “They’re doing such a good job,” the mom and volunteer said, about the school’s efforts to keep the students active.
Kyling said the foosball game has been so popular they had to make a schedule. The ABS pipes that the students hold on to are disinfected between each group, she explained, so the game is fun and safe.

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