splash pad

City crews clear a lot at the Sportplex for a new splash pad that should be open by May.

Come spring, children will have a new place to cool off thanks to the work of City of Alexander City employees and Tallapoosa County commissioner Steve Robinson.

“We are putting in a splash pad at the corner of Sportplex Boulevard and Arena Road,” Alexander City Parks and Recreation director Sonny Wilson said. “We hope to have it finished by the end of April and open in May.”

Wilson said the site was chosen for its proximity to other amenities and safety.

“We have bathrooms nearby and the pavilion,” Wilson said. “It is next to Sportplex Boulevard so families should feel safe. Imagination Station is just across the way from it. If a parent is at the park by themselves they will feel and be safe.”

Wilson said the splash pad near the other attractions should create more interest for them as well.

“With the ability to rent out the pavilion already, it should become popular with youth birthday parties,” Wilson said. “With the splash pad, park and bathrooms it should be a hit with birthday celebrations. They should be able to have some jam up parties.”

Wilson said between funding and trying to select a site, it has taken a little while to make the splash pad come to life.

“We have been trying for about eight to nine years,” Wilson said. “I’m excited. Commissioner Robinson helped us out with this.”

Crews from the city public works and light and power departments have been removing trees for the last week and bringing in dirt. Wilson said the splash pad will be about 30 by 30 feet and have many features like the water cascading over the mushroom and several water jets and sprinklers. According to Wilson a team of volunteers hope to dress up the area even more.

“We are doing a lot of grade work now,” Wilson said. “We are filling in the area a good bit to level it off. It will take about 150 loads of dirt. We would like to pipe the creek but that will have to wait until next year when we can put in the the required $12,000 for the cement pipe.

“The green team from Leadership Lake Martin is going to do a rendering of the area and help with shade structures around the splash pad; something like a gazebo for parents to sit in the shade. It may take us two years to finish the entire area. It will be a nice area when it is completed.”

Wilson said the department is looking at a smaller splash pad in the future for younger children.

Robinson also helped contribute to another project that is nearing completion in the Sportplex.

“The renovations to the dog park are about 90% complete,” Wilson said. “They have changed the fencing out from wood to metal and are adding some things for dogs to play in. They are supposed to be done by the end of the week.”

Wilson said the parks and rec department has special plans to celebrate the renovations to the dog park.

“We will have a grand opening with Lake Martin Animal Shelter,” Wilson said. “We will use it to raise funds for the shelter.”

Cliff Williams is a staff writer for Tallapoosa Publishers.