Splash pad reopens: Playground still closed, unsafe

Published 5:55 am Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Landon Tims, Bogalusa’s director of parks and recreation, has good news for the many children who are looking forward to visiting the Cassidy Park splash pad during the rapidly approaching warm weather months. The pad is operational again, thanks to FEMA funding.

“We knew it was something we had to get ready for the kids,” Tims said. “Every weekend every pavilion in the park is rented, and the splash pad is full. That’s why it was important to the city that we got it open.”

The park flooded last March, and considerable damage was done, including to the splash pad.

“We lost the controller that actually controls it,” Tims said. “We got a new one of those through FEMA. We didn’t get the money yet, but the funds were obligated, so we know we’ll get it.”

The controller cost about $5,200, he said.

Tims added the adjacent playground remains unsafe. Floodwaters left the ground beneath the sidewalks eroded, and playground equipment had toppled into huge sinkholes.

“The only thing is, the playground is still unsafe,” he said. “So we ask parents who bring their kids to the splash pad to be extra careful.”

Tims said he does not know when the playground may be re-opened.

“Unfortunately, right now there is no timeline,” he said. “It really pains me to say that. But we are still trying to make improvements to the park all the time.

“Terry Breland just donated a beautiful water wheel, that he built and installed. And Jeff Boone is building a new pier on the Cajun Cabin with lumber left over from another park project. The old pier was leaning and it had algae on it so people could slip.

“We’re hoping people realize there’s still a lot at the park they can enjoy.”

Tims added that if any visitors to the splash pad find it not working, they should call Bogalusa City Hall.

“We’ll get somebody out there to fix it,” he said.

Daily News reports Marcelle Hanemann wrote this story.