Summer Splashing, Having a Blast!
Story by Ammie Bryant, Editor and *photos by Jefferson Bryant
It’s July in Oklahoma, and you know what that means? It’s hot. The kids are out of school and parents and caregivers are looking for ways to cool off and keep the kids active and happy. Enter Stillwater’s new splash pads.
For years, families have been clamoring for a public splash pad. This summer, those families finally got their wish, thanks to a donation of a little over $586,000 from the Stillwater Medical Center, the Stillwater Community Foundation, and the Stillwater Masonic Lodge with the construction of not only one–but two–splash pads. The City of Stillwater has installed (and will maintain) utilities, signage, and sod at each site.
On May 26, the Boomer Lake splash pad opened to the delight of kids and parents alike. The Boomer Lake splash pad is located near the pavilions on the north loop of the park drive, on the west side of the lake, near the pavilions. People began lining up well in advance of the ribbon-cutting ceremony, and if you were late arriving for the opening, you experienced difficulty finding a parking spot nearby.
“We are grateful to our donors for generously funding these projects for our community,” Mayor Gina Noble said. “Many residents have shown great interest in having splash pads in Stillwater, and we’re excited our area children will get to enjoy them for years to come.”
The splash pad at Southern Woods park had originally been planned to open before Memorial Day, along with the Boomer Lake Splash Pad, but it was postponed due to construction issues with the location as well as equipment and parts delays. The newest splash pad to open features a forest theme and is a little smaller than the ocean themed splash pad at Boomer Lake, but we are confident it will delight the crowds, just the same!
As an added perk, the Stillwater Public Schools Summer Food Service Program is offering free meals again this summer with sack lunches available at Southern Woods Park between 11 and 11:30am and at Boomer Lake Park between 12 and 12:30pm. Both splash pads are open everyday 10am until 8pm (recently expanded hours were announced as: 9am to 9pm) and are free!
By the time this issue makes it into the hands of our readers, the second splash pad will be open at Southern Woods Park on 12th Ave. between Hester and Knoblock. (As of the writing of this article, it was scheduled for June 30 at 10am.) We expect the opening of the second splash pad to help alleviate some of the crowding that may have occurred earlier in the summer at the Boomer Lake location.
If you haven’t taken your favorite kid to one of the splash pads this summer, take the time for this treat, and take a run through the sprinklers yourself. You’ll feel like a kid again!
*Editor’s note: All photographs were taken by Jefferson Bryant at the grand opening of the Boomer Lake Splash pad on May 26, 2016.