Traverse City Record-Eagle

Archive: Wednesday

June 26, 2013

Clinch Park makes splash at grand opening

TRAVERSE CITY — Carter Schmidt stood alone on a concrete pad as former Michigan Gov. William G. Milliken threw the switch that drenched the Traverse City boy.

Carter, 9, became the first child to officially enjoy the city’s newest attraction at renovated Clinch Park during its grand opening Tuesday morning. He wasn’t alone long; more than three dozen children soon flocked to the splash pad, mister, rain arch and playground.

“It was pretty cold, but fun,” Carter said.

The water feature includes an educational component to demonstrate the natural cycle of water. It was named after Milliken -- the state’s longest-serving governor and Traverse City native son -- to honor his advancement of environmental legislation that protects Michigan’s water resources.

“I think it’s just wonderful and it didn’t take long for the young children to jump in the pool and start dancing,” Milliken said. “People are going to enjoy this ... the water and the sounds that come from it and the sounds of the children playing.”

Milliken thanked the organizations that funded the $2.9 million project, including a collaborative of 18 area foundations.

“You have made wonderful contributions and we will remain forever grateful to you,” Milliken said.

Ross Biederman represented the contributing Biederman Foundation at the event.

“This will be used for generations,” he said. “I look at this as an amenity for the local people ... not just an attraction for tourists.”

Jerry Sprague of Traverse City regularly visited the park to observe construction and likes what he sees. He told his grandkids they were going to the zoo park this morning, but said they didn’t seem to miss the zoo as they played in the water feature.

“This is one of the better things Traverse City has come up with,” Sprague said.

Peggy Sheidler of Suttons Bay said her grandchildren hadn’t stopped playing in the water since it was turned on almost an hour earlier.

Text Only

Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Associated Press Video
Obama: Putin must push separatists to aid MH17 probe Michigan inmates no longer allowed to wear orange due to 'OITNB' Adam Levine Ties the Knot Sebastian The Ibis Walks Beautiful Bride Down The Aisle | ACC Must See Moment NASA Ceremony Honors Moon Walker Neil Armstrong Faces of Souls Lost in Malaysian Plane Crash 105-year-old woman throws first pitch Man Creates Spreadsheet of Wife's Reasons for Turning Down Sex 'Weird Al' Is Wowed by Album's Success Rory McIlroy struggles, surges, wins British Open NOW TRENDING: Real life Pac-Man Explosions as hot air balloon crashes in Clinton DUI Driver Dragged to Safety by Officer After Walking Onto Busy Freeway Celebrities That We'd Like to Send to the Moon Spectacular lightning storm hits London Malaysian Flight Victim Was South Florida Grad Rory McIlroy on pace to break British Open records Officials Fear MH17 Site Now Tampered by Rebels Lowes employees repair Vietnam vet's wheelchair Widow of Staten Island man who died after NYPD takedown says he was unjustifiably targeted