Weatherford celebrates grand opening of renovated park, splash pad
Six-year-old Malachi Young couldn’t believe his eyes. There was so much water, and it was all his to run around and play in.
Well, his and a host of other children who plan to enjoy the new splash pad and other renovations at Marshall Park on the north side of Weatherford this summer.
“I like the fish,” Malachi said, his eyes unable to leave the buckets he was referencing that, when they fill with water through a funneling system, overturn and drench whomever is standing below.
Malachi and his mother, Taylor Young, were among many on hand for the ribbon cutting of the new-look Marshall Park on May 21. The park, previously used for softball with a small playground, was renovated to add the splash pad, an updated playground, parking and landscaping.
The splash pad actually had a soft grand opening last summer, but now folks have the complete package for the entire park, Weatherford Parks and Recreation Department Shannon Goodman said.
“This is an exciting update to the park system and the north side of town. It also adds another splash pad for the community, which are very popular in Texas for kids to cool down in during the hot summer months,” Goodman said. “It’s been needed on the north side for a long time.”
Weatherford Parks have three splash pads now, including ones at Love Street Park and at the Cherry Park pool.
“They are nice because they’re self-monitored,” Goodman said. “Parents can bring their kids out and let them play all they want.”
Goodman said the city was determined the ribbon cutting, which had been rained out twice previously, was going to happen this day despite the area being hit by torrential rains the night before.
“We put our big tent up and said, rain or shine, it’s happening,” he said with a smile.
Newly elected Weatherford Mayor Paul Paschall asked the crowd to be silent for a moment and to listen to the sounds of the children playing in the splash pad with the sound of the water.
“That is why this is an amazing day,” he said.
Susan Galloway brought her two children who attend nearby Seguin Elementary, first-grader Kaleb and fifth-grader Kenton, to enjoy the event. She said they’ve been enjoying the renovations, especially the splash pad, for a while.
“They love coming out and playing with their friends, and it’s really convenient,” she said. “And it looks so beautiful here now. The city did a fantastic job.”
To which Kaleb added, “I like playing in the water. I love the splashing.”
Kenton nodded in agreement as he continued to enjoy his ice cream purchased at the local vending truck.
“I think it is definitely cool what they’ve done. I love the upgrades,” Taylor Young said. “I don’t live near here, but my grandfather lives over there and we’re going to come over here a lot this summer.”
Matt Ticzkus echoed the same sentiment as he played catch with his 7-year-old son, Brady, on the lush lawn highlighting the landscape.
“There was nothing exciting here before, and now look at it,” he said. “And it’s great to see it come to the north side of town, which was very needed.”