Sanford Children’s Hospital adding new pediatric playground for kids

July 19, 2023

SIOUX FALLS, S.D.–Sanford Health is breaking ground on a park in front of the Sanford Children’s Hospital in Sioux Falls.

The park will be called the “Billion Pavilion” and include accessible play equipment for pediatric patients, as well as gardens and shaded areas like a covered picnic shelter.

“We know that play is very therapeutic and an important part of the healing process for children,” said Sheri Fischer, executive director of Sanford Children’s Hospital. “Even though we are very blessed to have indoor play spaces within our Sanford Children’s castle where children can go to get out of their patient room, play for a while and just be a kid, we also know that children want to be outside and not trapped indoors when it’s nice out. This outdoor park and respite area will allow children to play and experience the therapeutic benefits of being outdoors as they heal and recover from their illness.”

The health system states that the new space will also include physical therapy steps and ramps for patients, allowing them to do their physical therapy outside.

“We are so grateful for the generous gifts from members of the community to make this project possible,” said Erin Sanderson, executive director of the Sanford Health Foundation in Sioux Falls. “This has been a dream of Sanford Children’s staff for years and today we get to make it a reality, all thanks to our generous donors.”

The park is set to be finished in October.

The new park will cost $1.4 million and is completely donor-funded.

David H. and Christine Billion donated $1 million to the project.