Jubilee Splash Pad nearly complete

After six years of planning and preparation, the new splash pad at Jubilee Park is nearing completion. Although an official date for the grand opening has yet to be determined, the Cave Junction Parks & Recreation Commission is hoping to have things up and running sometime in July.
The 1600 square foot splash pad is only one portion of the recent renovations that have been underway at Jubilee Park, but it is by far the most eye-catching, with several colorful water fixtures shaped like flowers, frogs, and even a small butterfly. When it is finished, the splash pad will be turned on from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., but it will not just be running for that entire time. Instead, there is a small flower off to one side of the pad that serves as a control panel, which will turn the pad on for 15minutes at a time after a button is pressed. In an interview, Parks & Recreation Chairman John Miles said that he hopes this addition to the park will bring more family-centric fun to city residents.
Miles explained that, as the commission members were coming up with ideas for the splash pad, he personally visited several other parks in surrounding areas to see how splash pads benefitted those who spent time at their local parks. He recounted, “A bunch of parents would be sitting at benches talking, kids were playing in the water. Then one dad would leave and come back with KFC. Another parent would leave and come back with food for their kids, and pretty soon everyone was just making a day of it.”
That sense of community really stuck out to Miles, and it fueled the commission’s determination to bring that same welcoming environment to Jubilee Park.
“The goal is, as soon as it’s operational and safe, we’re going to open it up.” Miles stated, adding that not all of the newly renovated or installed areas of the park would be open at the same time. In fact, the new playground area could even open before the splash pad.
In addition to the splash pad, a new ADA-compliant section of the park’s playground is being built. This section will include a merry-go-round, teeter-totter, and two-person swing, all of which are designed to be accessible to individuals with physical disabilities. This section will also have rubber bond flooring installed to prevent injury.
While the rubber flooring in the ADA-compliant section of the park was originally meant to be cover the entire playground area, the cost to re-surface the already established playground with the same material would have exceeded the commission’s budget. As a result, a compromise was reached in the form of playaway fiber wood chips. These chips are specially designed to absorb impact, and they are also designed to allow wheelchairs and walkers to move easily over them. “I didn’t know they made such a thing until we began researching” admitted Miles.

Splash Pad at Jubilee Park Saturday, June 8 almost ready to open.
(Photo by Dan Mancuso, Illinois Valley News)

While the splash pad and playground additions are impressive, Miles emphasized that these things are merely the first changes to the park that the commission wants to implement. A long-term plan is currently being designed with additional renovations, including an expanded parking lot, and more areas for sports-centric activities. These things will come with time, but these ideas certainly seem to bode well for Jubilee Park’s future overall.