Lafayette Elementary School is seeking its first major playground renovations in roughly 20 years, with principal Kristen Hix hoping to raise an estimated $1,600-$1,800 by the end of October.

“We have a few pieces of equipment, but what’s out there isn’t enough for the kids to really get out there and enjoy,” Hix said. “They have to wait in line to swing … so we want to add to that and bring in new things the kids are starting to enjoy.”

Changes students and parents can expect include an additional swing set, a soccer goal and fresh coats of paint, with the possibility of a new basketball goal.

“(To raise money), we’re charging $3 to park on the open areas in the playground during home football games,” Hix said. “At the last home game, we were able to park 91 cars. We may look at how we parked it and those types of things, but I don’t know that we’ll get a lot more in it.”

The majority of the money is expected to go into adding the swing set, which Hix said would cost between $1,600 and $1,800 depending on how many swings are included (likely between four and six).

The Macon County Soccer League (MCSL) donated a soccer goal to the effort, and the school is exploring options for a basketball goal depending on available funds.

“One of the two basketball goals that are out there, we’ve had to replace a few times over the last couple of years with P.E. (physical education) money, so we’re looking at that,” Hix said. “We’re also wanting to paint the playground equipment that’s out there now to kind of freshen it up.”

Soccer in particular is a growing pastime that Hix said LES hopes to accommodate.

In addition to Macon County High School’s boys’ and girls’ teams, nearly 250 children in various age groups play recreationally through the MCSL.

“We’re trying to get soccer to catch on here in Lafayette,” MCSL President Kyle Sircy said. “So many kids have grown up never having played soccer, and if it’s on a playground, hopefully, they’ll realize it’s fun, learn the rules and get into the game … some of them may even end up going to play for (Division I) colleges.”

According to Sircy, who is a Macon County High School alumnus in his 30s, soccer is a relatively recent addition to the community that was unavailable during his high-school years. He donated the league’s extra goal to the elementary school with that experience in mind.

“I know Kristen really well,” Sircy said. “We go to church together, and she asked if there was a way we could get a goal together. We had bought two brand new goals to replace a broken one. The other was in good shape, and we decided it would be a good use for the school to have it.”

The donation puts the school in a better position to reach the rest of its targets through the parking charges at football games, which are the only active fundraising efforts currently.

“We just want it to be appealing to the kids for them to get out there and get active,” Hix said. “Students don’t get a lot of play time at school. We want them to be able to enjoy it when they do.”