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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Hundreds of people worked to build a playground and garden, and sort food donations, as part of a series of volunteer projects spread across Charlotte on Saturday.

The citywide day of service was organized by the Charlotte in 2012 host committee for the upcoming Democratic National Convention, along with organizations like United Way of Central Carolinas and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Housing Partnership. In all, volunteers were scattered at eight projects across the city.

In one of the efforts, volunteers built a playground at the Village of Rosedale Apartments off Craighead Street north of uptown. The playground, which organizers hoped to build in six hours, has slides, a merry-go-round and rock climbing station among other features for kids. It also includes fitness stations and a walking path for adults.

The playground is one of 18 being built this year by the non-profit KaBoom! and the health care company, Humana. The organizations plan to build another playground next weekend in Tampa, Fla., site of this year s Republican National Convention.

KaBoom! project manager Dan Neimiroff said the projects help the organization reach its goal of making sure children have safe places where they can play and be active.

But local leaders, including Mayor Anthony Foxx, said the project is another way they hope the DNC will leave a legacy on the community after the convention is over. Special projects are being launched in areas like healthy children and families, youth employment, promoting a diverse economy and building a sustainable society.

Other community service projects on Saturday were held at First Ward Elementary School, Second Harvest Food Bank, the Habitat for Humanity ReStore and Metal Recycling Center; the YWCA and Colonial Francis Beatty Park.

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