New splash pad opens

An Oneida youngster enjoys the splash pad at Oneida City Park on Thursday, June 18, 2015.

ONEIDA, Tenn. — Summer just got a little bit cooler.

Thursday morning, Oneida Mayor Jack E. Lay — alongside aldermen David Lowe, Cecil Anderson and Linda Lay —stood before a small crowd of parents and children for the grand opening of Oneida City Park’s splash pad.

“This is a monumental moment,” Lay told the crowd. “This splash pad was funded by a state grant that helped install lights at the Bear Creek Sports Complex. We are excited to be able to provide something like this to the community.”

A state inspector gave approval to the opening of the splash pad on Wednesday morning after confirming that the park met all the requirements in construction.

“The inspector made sure our bathrooms were set up, which they are,” Mayor Lay said. “She made sure we had our signs up and that everything was working.”

After a short speech, Mayor Lay and the other city officials ceremoniously turned on the splash pad and children began playing in the streams of water.

The splash pad is set to open daily at 10 a.m. and will be turned off at 8 p.m. — unless, according to Mayor Lay, the heat is still persistent after closing time. The timer will then be reset for the park’s closing time.

The pad operates in 15-minute intervals, shutting off after a 15-minute period. Hopes are this will conserve water when no one is using it, however, the splash pad can be restarted by pressing a button on a nearby pole.

“We are just happy to give our young people something to do at our park that will keep them cool,” Mayor Lay said. “They can have fun and be safe here.”

Story reprinted with permission from the Oneida Independent Herald. By: Marcus Burchfield.

Oneida Mayor Jack E. Lay is joined by aldermen Cecil Anderson, David Lowe and Linda Lay as the new splash pad opens at Oneida City Park on Thursday, June 18, 2015.