The latest upgrade to the Amherst Lions Park will help local residents, especially those in the West Highlands area, beat the heat, Amherst Lions Club spokesman Rubin Millard said on Saturday, Aug. 1, 2020, following the official opening of the park’s new $165,000 splash pad.
The splash pad, located at 39 Hickman St., is the latest addition to the five-year-old park that sits on the site of the former West Highlands Elementary School.
“Before the Lions Club started the park, we sent out a survey to the people of the area asking what they'd like to have in it,” Millard, chairman of the Amherst Lions Park Committee, said.
“A splash pad was something they asked for. It was the number 1 request made by the people who responded to our survey. So, it was incorporated into our development plan for the park.”
Millard made the comments shortly after members of the Lions Club, Amherst town council members and town staff participated in a ribbon cutting ceremony to officially open the splash pad. The club also held a barbecue to celebrate the latest addition to the park.
Construction of the splash pad was carried out by ABC Recreation and local contractors during the past few months. They installed water lines, drainage lines, a cement pad and the splash-pad equipment before adding top soil and sod around the facility.
They also installed benches alongside the splash pad for people to sit on.
“We couldn’t do this without the support of the people for the Amherst Lions Club,” Millard said. “We also received financial help from the Province of Nova Scotia through the Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage and the Community Credit Union as well as support from the Town of Amherst.”
The park, which opened in 2015, “was created for the people of Amherst and especially those of the West Highlands area,” Millard said. “The Amherst Lions Club has pledged to give them the best park possible.
“Over the years, the Lions Club has worked hard to ensure that we have created a park that has the facilities the folks using this park wanted. We are succeeding in doing that and are very proud of this park.”
“The Amherst Lions Club has every right to be proud of this park,” Mayor David Kogon said. “This latest investment in a splash pad demonstrates their commitment to providing the best park possible as well as their commitment to help make Amherst a great place to live, work and play.”
So far, the Lions Club has invested $500,000 into the park. In addition to the new splash pad, the park includes a walking track, a children’s playground, washrooms, covered picnic tables and tennis courts.
In the future, the club is planning to add a basketball court and more covered picnic areas to the park.
The splash pad at the Amherst Lions Park is the second such facility in the town. The other one is in Dickey Park, located at 132 East Pleasant St.