By Sara Tischauser
As summer is approaching and warmer weather is hopefully coming, people in the Seymour area have something new to look forward to when the temperatures get warmer.
Construction has already begun at Seymour Lions Recknagel Park on a splash pad.
Jessica Ullmer said she had seen a Facebook post by Lindsey Kraft about how nice it would be to have a splash pad in the Seymour area. Ullmer said she started thinking how nice this would be and asked Kraft to help her start working on how to bring a splash pad to Seymour. Plans started for this in July 2017.
Ullmer said they are using Commercial Recreation Specialists (CRS) to help with the design, apparatuses and engineering of the splash pad.
“They [CRS] are the ones with expertise in splash pads,” said Doug Hahn, member of the Lions Splash pad committee.
According to the CRS website: “Splashpads® are fully-automated, dynamic, zero-depth aquatic play areas that bring endless hours of fun.”
Hahn said at first he wasn’t even sure what a splash pad was when they were first approached about having one put in at Seymour Lions Recknagel Park.
“I was like we are going to do this, it’s a great idea,” Hahn said. “Then I had a grandchild who had a fifth birthday party down by Madison and they had it at a splash pad down there and it was like ‘whoa we are going to do this in Seymour. Whoa this is spectacular.’”
Once seeing a splash pad in person, Hahn said he understood better what they were working towards having in Seymour.
“My whole appreciation for the whole project changed when I saw it in person,” Hahn said.
Ullmer said that having a splash pad in Seymour will be beneficial to many.
“It brings kids out of the house and people interacting,” Ullmer said. “The purpose is to get children outdoors interacting with each other and even parents interacting with each other. We all get very busy in our lives and jobs and this is good opportunity for kids and adults to get out into the community.”
Ullmer said hopefully this will also help local businesses with the added people coming to area and getting out of the house.
“Also a benefit to the businesses in town,” Ullmer said. “It will definitely bring in business to the businesses that are here, so definitely great for the community.”
Hahn believes the addition of the splash pad in Seymour will bring in people from outside the area.
“I think people within a 25 mile radius would come in to use this,” Hahn said about the splash pad.
Bringing people to the Seymour community, Ullmer said was one of the reasons to build this splash pad.
“This was one of the main purposes not only to drive kids outside but bring people into the city,” Ullmer said. “If people come in from outside maybe they will decide to move here and go to school here. It comes full circle.”
Ullmer said they have an upcoming fundraiser on May 17. This will be the third Dueling Pianos event and will be put on by NEW Piano Guys. The event will be held at Doxbee’s Banquet and Buffet, N6744 County Road C, Seymour, with doors opening at 7 p.m. and music starting at 8 p.m.
Tickets are still available but Ullmer said the other two events did sell out so anyone interested should get their tickets as soon as possible. More information about the event and ticket information can be found at https://www.facebook.com/events/ 315000745872057/.
“People come out for entertainment and fun especially since this isn’t something we offer in this area very often,” Ullmer said about the Dueling Pianos event.
The event will also feature a silent auction, bucket raffles and a 50/50 raffle.
In addition to these fundraisers, the splash pad project also received $25,079.99 from the Recknagel Park Fund which was approved at the Jan. 28 Seymour City Council meeting. This money was set aside specifically for improvements to Recknagel Park.
Ullmer said there has also been community fundraising where businesses and residents in the area have made contributions.
One of the ways this can happen is by purchasing a brick or paver. These bricks and pavers can be engraved and will be used in the walkway by the splash pad. More information on purchasing a brick or paver can be found on their Facebook page Seymour Splash Pad Project.
“Even if it’s a Mother’s Day gift they are giving with a brick that has their family name on it, I think it is a good gift,” Ullmer said.
There are also sponsorship options which include signage recognition including company logo.
Donation checks can be made out to City of Seymour, Splash Pad Fund and mailed to 328 N. Main Street, Seymour, WI 54165.
Many companies in the Seymour area have contributed and helped with the project so far. These include: Fox Cities Builders-Travis Ullmer project manager; Elexco-excavating; Dan Anderson-plumbing; Linsmeyer Masonry-brick masonry; Mark’s Electric-electrical; and City of Seymour. Other donors include: Community Family Resource Centers, Inc., Seymour Dental, Jackson Point, Hotel Seymour, Krabbes Kountry Klub, Petticoat Junction, Seymour Fire Department, Bank First, Performance Corp., Menn Law, Truman Haase, Wealth Management, Don’s Quality Market, Muehl-Boettcher, Doxbee’s and Skinkis Lawn Care. Donations are still coming forward and more donors are being sought for the completion of the project.
Ullmer said one of the nice things about the splash pad will be how the water discharge from it is handled.
“We will not pay for any type of discharge because the water will be discharged to the Little Henry,” Ullmer said. “That was approved with the DNR [Department of Natural Resources]. It saves the city a ton of money if it is water that is not a recirculated system.”
Also, Ullmer said that the water in the splash pad will be motion censored and the water will only come on when someone is there using the splash pad. Once the splash pad is up, operating hours will be posted at Seymour Lions Recknagel Park.
The splash pad will be free for people to use. Ullmer said the hope is to have it up and running around Memorial Day and it will stay open through Labor Day weekend. Going forward Hahn said the plan is to have it open from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day weekend in all future years.
Hahn said this project was a big undertaking for the City of Seymour and he is happy with the public private partnership that helped make the splash pad a reality.
“It’s nice to see a city the size of Seymour rally together,” Hahn said. “This is a fairly significant project for a community the size of Seymour.”
Ullmer said many people came together to make the splash pad a possibility.
“The overall support has been pretty great,” Ullmer said. “I think people are super excited and excited to see it done because it has been in the works for quite a while. The residents and even citizens outside of Seymour have really come together and supported it financially. It’s amazing.”