HUNTINGTON, WV (LOOTPRESS) – The Greater Huntington Park & Recreation District, American Water Charitable Foundation, National Recreation & Park Association and West Virginia American Water will host a grand opening event on Saturday, May 29, from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. for an all-inclusive splash pad at St. Cloud Commons in Huntington, W.Va. The grand opening comes after the Greater Huntington Park & Recreation District received a $250,000 Building Better Communities grant in the fall of 2019 from the American Water Charitable Foundation.
“We are so thrilled to see this all-inclusive splash pad come to completion,” said Kathy McKenna, interim director of the Greater Huntington Park & Recreation District. “This project is the first of its kind and would not have been possible without the generous support of the American Water Charitable Foundation and the coordination of the National Recreation & Park Association.”
As part of the grand opening event, the Greater Huntington Park & Recreation District will provide free refreshments, yard games and activities for attendees. This event is open to the public. All attendees must follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance for outdoor gatherings.
“Now more than ever, with summer on the horizon and as we begin a safe return to normalcy following COVID-19, families need a recreational facility like St. Cloud Commons,” said Robert Burton, president of West Virginia American Water. “We are proud to partner with these great organizations to make this all-inclusive splash pad a reality for children of the greater Huntington area.”
The American Water Charitable Foundation is committed to participating and investing in programs that benefit communities served by American Water.
“Through our work, we have found that splash pads are a wonderful way to provide water access for all while supporting our conservation focus and engaging community members in environmental education,” said Carrie Williams, president, American Water Charitable Foundation. “This has been a wonderful partnership and we look forward to children in the greater Huntington area enjoying this outdoor play space for generations to come.”
For years, the National Recreation & Park Association has worked closely with the American Water Charitable Foundation to invest in cities and communities across the country by building splash pads and water-based educational infrastructure for children.
“We are proud to support the essential work of park and recreation professionals in the City of Huntington to provide their communities with equitable water-based education and inclusive play opportunities,” said Kellie May, National Recreation & Park Association vice president of programs and partnerships. “The National Recreation & Park Association is proud to support this important work through our partnership with the American Water Charitable Foundation.”
A small, socially distant ribbon cutting ceremony for the splash pad was held on October 15, 2020. The American Water Charitable Foundation previously awarded a Building Better Communities grant for the construction of the Magic Island splash pad in Charleston, West Virginia. Construction of that splash pad was completed in the summer of 2016.