Tuesday, May 27, 2014
At a snow cone filled ribbon cutting on Friday, Mayor Jack Scoville officially declared the opening of the Splash Pad at Ben Cooper Park.
If you weren’t sure on Friday how to find the park that sits on the corner of Lafayette and Prince St, you could have followed the screams of excitement that came from the children playing on the new Splash Pad. “I’m so excited, I have been waiting and waiting for them to turn the water on, “said an excited Taliyah Ford, “I knew it was close when I saw them out here putting in the benches!”
The Ben Cooper Park project is an on-going, multi-year effort by the City to improve and enhance
the park; creating an anchor for the neighborhood and a destination within the City.
The first phase of this project is the installation of a Splash Pad to serve as the focal point of the park. The pad has little or no standing water. The ground nozzles, hidden in the form of colorful clam shells and animated marine life, spray water upwards and out onto the splash pad’s non-slip rain deck.
The stationary turtle water pipe seemed to be a favorite of the children on Friday; as did the dolphin sprayer which featured a moveable nozzle similar to those found on fire trucks that allows users to spray others.
Georgetown little tykes got wet and wild under the three fishes splash zone. Colorfully painted fish buckets high above the splash pad collect water, while the children below wait in anticipation as the buckets tip from side to side, finally toppling completely over sending buckets of water on to the heads of the kids below.
Mayor Scoville was excited for the children to finally get their feet wet. “This project is just the first phase for what we have planned here.” Said Scoville.
The mayor believes the Splash Pad serves a much better neighborhood purpose than the former occupants; old cable spools and telephone poles from the city’s electric department. “Once the pole yard was moved to the new Eagle electric site,” said Scoville, “we started rezoning and moving forward so the children of this community could have a safe place to play in the hot summer.”
The Mayor also commented on the security of the park by saying that the city has paid close attention to security and has installed 24-7 security cameras, and will provide a close patrol of tight security by the police department.
Security was the last thing on the mind of Erin Wilson. In between bites of the snow cone that Chief Paul Gardner made her, she said, “I’m telling you right now, I am coming here every day in the summer until my Mama makes me come home!”
Denise Chapman from Optimism Preventive Services repeated the enthusiasm of Wilson. “This is going to be a wonderful place for us to bring our children in the summer…..we will be here often. “ Chapman said.
Optimism Preventive Services, Inc. is a 501(C)(3) nonprofit organization located in Georgetown that is designed to enhance the lives of young people ages 5-18.
Cindy Thompson, Coordinator of Keep Georgetown Beautiful explained that there were additional water features that were on backorder for the park, but the summer weather had arrived a bit early, and they wanted the children to go ahead and begin enjoying the park.
The expressions on the children’s faces, and the delight in their steps as they played in the park said it all.