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New equipment brings out children and the man himself

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By Jim Shilander

San Clemente officially re-opened the playground at Max Berg Plaza Park Saturday, and the park’s namesake was on hand to get a look at, and try out, the newly installed playground equipment.

The city shut down the playground in July to replace aging equipment. The new equipment is accessible to able-bodied and disabled children. The older equipment will be refurbished by San Clemente-based organization Kids Around the World, which will send the refurbished equipment to developing countries.

Plaza Park was renamed in 1985 for Berg, then San Clemente’s city clerk, upon his retirement. The park was originally built in 1928.

A number of children and community members, along with both current and former members of the Beaches, Parks and Recreation Commission and city staff also attended the ribbon cutting ceremony.

Berg said that while he doesn’t drive anymore, with his family all living in Southern California, he gets to visit the park often.

“I love this park,” Berg said. “I like to come here as often as I can. I love the new stuff they put in.”

Berg also got a chance, with some assistance from Mayor Bob Baker, to take a ride down one of the slides.

“That was fun. I enjoyed that,” Berg said.

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