WATCH NOW: Aria’s Playground: Mooresville girl with pediatric cancer receives surprise of a lifetime | Latest Headlines
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However, the playground had yet to be built to complete the surprise for Aria, which meant that her parents, Nichole and Adam Hipp, had an extra bit of secrecy Friday morning. From about 9am, all the windows on one side of the house had to be closed with curtains and Aria had to be kept busy while volunteers from the Roc Solid Foundation, Gwaltney and Smithfield built her new playground right outside.
“We had my mom sneak upstairs to take pictures of the progress so Aria wouldn’t see,” Nichole Hipp said.
“However, Roc Solid provided us with a box of activities so we could distract her from what was happening outside,” added Adam Hipp.
Many members of the companies that donated the playset to the Hipp family also attended to help build the playset. When they were done building, they all had the chance to leave a message of hope for Aria somewhere on the playset.
“We just want Aria to have a safe place to play while she’s in treatment,” said Adrienne Taylor, public relations manager for Gwaltney. “This is the fourth build I’ve done and it just opens your heart when they come out to see their new playset and they know they have a place to come out and play and not worry .”
Long after all the volunteers helping Aria with her new playground, she kept going up the ladder and down the slide, showing that despite her diagnosis, she can still be as playful as any other child her age.