Maumelle: Making a Splash

Now that cooler weather has finally arrived, the new Maumelle Splash Pad is ending its first year of operation.

The Pad, a project of the Maumelle Parks & Recreation Department, opened July 1 and is located next to the Maumelle Public Library.

It cost roughly $250,000 to build and admission was free.

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The Pad’s costs were covered by the City of Maumelle, Ottenheimer Foundation, Arkansas Department of Health, Clark Family Foundation, Maumelle Lions Club, Riley's Warriors Inc., Kimberly Clark Corporation, Kids Being Kids Therapy, Maumelle Rotary Club, Crafton Tull Foundation, Red Basket, Maumelle River Park Civitan Club, Maumelle Baseball Association, Maumelle Soccer Club, Mazzoni Family, Gardner Family and Maumelle Charter PTO.

The Maumelle Splash Pad seen on at its ribbon cutting and grand opening on July 1 (Maumelle Parks & Rec photo)

Partners include the Timmons Arts Foundation, Play 4 All, Cunningham Recreation and RIR Enterprises.

The Pad is just phase one of a much larger plan and phase two is the addition of an inclusive playground as it will become the Maumelle Play and Splash.

Donations are still being sought for the playground and Parks & Rec Director Phillip Raborn can be emailed at phillip@maumelleparksandrec.com or called at 501-851-6990. 

Q&A with Phillip Raborn

  • Do you have an idea of how many people used the splash pad in its first year? 

I don’t know how many people attended the splash pad this first year. I do know that it seemed that every time I drove by there were people using the park. To me it seemed that it was a steady flow of people throughout the day. 

  • After being open for the season, is there anything you'd change for next year? 

We utilized a temporary fence this year to help contain the kids and keep them away from the road. There will be a permanent 4 foot fence with a closing gate that will be added before the end of this year so it’s ready for next season.

  • What's the status on the inclusive playground and when do you anticipate it being done? 

We are in the process of getting updated pricing on the inclusive playground to see how much of a price increase there may be added to the project. We are hoping that the success of the splash pad will speed up the process with hopefully more sponsors, donors and grant opportunities. 

  • It seems like the splash pad was well received, but what kind of feedback did you get from the community? 

I only received positive feedback from residents and from out of town families that were utilizing the splash pad.

  • Anything else you'd like to add? 

I noticed that most of the visitors to the splash pad treated it more like a playground than a swimming pool. They would stay for an hour or two unlike a pool where people stay for longer periods of time. I never saw it overcrowded but I would see a lot of coming and going throughout the entire day. The Splash Pad is a great addition to the Parks and Recreation Department and the City of Maumelle.