News in Brief

UCI Builds High-Tech Playhouse for Charity Organization

A team from UC Irvine’s facilities management recently built a high tech playhouse for HomeAid Orange County’s Project Playhouse 2007 fundraiser, an event in which whimsical cottages built by top California engineering and building teams are displayed and auctioned off to raise money for homeless shelters. The playhouses are exhibited at Newport Beach’s Fashion Island every autumn. The cottages combine the imagination of childhood with the art of building by uniting high-tech elements with unstructured play.
UCI’s playhouse, created by a team led by supervising carpenter Bill Mitchell and charmingly named ‘Lakeside Retreat,’ is built to resemble a cabin one may find in Lake Tahoe, with a wrap-around deck overlooking a sparkling miniature lake. It even includes campus mascot Peter the Anteater at the helm of a little rowboat. A fake bear rug, faux fireplace and wood paneling are used to decorate the interior of the cabin.
This is the second year that UCI will be participating in the fundraiser. Last year’s playhouse was called ‘Fun At The Cape Escape’ and sold for $40,000.
For a $5 donation, visitors can tour this and other playhouses at their Fashion Island home on the weekends from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. until the auction on Oct. 13.

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