It promises to be one of the highlights of the 2018 summer season: the opening of the new Hessel Park splash pad.
The Champaign Park District’s popular park tore out its old splash pad last year. The new pad will have a soft opening on May 26 and will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. through Labor Day.
“It will operate a lot like the Douglass Park splash pad, where you can touch a center point (to activate) and there’s also a post you can touch,” said Chelsea Norton, director of marketing and communications for the Park District.
Norton said a grand opening is scheduled for June 2 in conjunction with Hessel’s 100th birthday party.
The new Hessel pad was designed to be compatible with the Douglass pad, which will allow for interchangeable features.
“I don’t know how often we’ll take advantage of the compatibility,” Norton said, “but they are of the same manufacturer so there should be some interchangeability. I’m not sure how we’ll utilize that.”