Renderings of the proposed Aquatix splash pad

Courtesy rendering of splash pad

Shakopee native Greg Stoks, managing director for the water division of Landscape Structures, has offered the city his patent-pending hydraulic activator system, along with 11 water fountain features such as a spraying lion and frog.

A splash pad is in the works for Shakopee.

A proposal for the installation of an all-inclusive splash pad in Lions Park was unanimously approved by the Shakopee City Council on May 21.

Shakopee-native and managing director for the water division of Landscape Structures Greg Stoks introduced his patent-pending hydraulic activator system to city council members. It allows children with mental and/or physical disabilities an accessible area to play.

“It’s very open and inviting and allows not just the kids, but their parents that might be assisting them also to be involved in the actual playground feature itself,” Tracy Pink, chair of the Lions Park Committee, said at the meeting.

Stoks offered to donate his invention and splash pad equipment worth a total $50,000 to Lions Park. He will also provide a three-year warranty on all pieces and parts. The equipment features designs of a lion, a frog, reeds, a palm tree and four arch jets.

Pink said the Lions Club will cover extra expenses of about $18,000, including installation and maintenance. However, Pink estimates the splash pad will require 874,800 gallons of water per year, at a projected cost of $1,000 to $1,500 per year. In what he calls a three-pronged partnership, Pink asked that the city of Shakopee contribute these funds to the project.

According to Stoks, one button would activate the system in the entire park, feeding 60 gallons of fresh water per minute for an optional duration of 30 seconds to two minutes.

Parks and Recreation Director Jay Tobin said there has been discussion of potentially reusing the domestic water source for irrigation in the park or even rerouting it in order to supplement the water supply at SandVenture Aquatic Park. At the very least, Tobin said the water will go into a retention pond.

Construction of the splash pad is scheduled to begin in the current location the park’s sand volleyball court.

“I think it will be an awesome complement to our all-inclusive playground that gets used unbelievably by all sorts of folks,” Mayor Bill Mars said at the meeting. “That zero-barrier is really important. It’s different than playgrounds 20 years ago.”


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