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Napier's coolest playground to extend opening hours, toys

Napier’s inflatable water playground has made a real splash so far this summer, with visitor numbers so high that Napier City Council is now investigating developing the concept further.

Council is applying to Hawke’s Bay Regional Council for resource consent to install at least two to three more structures, adjoining the current Splash ‘n’ Play configuration at Pandora Pond.

“It’s been such a runaway success that we’ve contacted Wibit, the company that makes the inflatable toys, trampolines and so on, and made some initial inquiries about getting additional structures manufactured,” says Glenn Lucas, Manager Sport and Recreation for Napier City Council.

With such enthusiasm for the playground, and high demand particularly on warm and sunny days, Council will also extend the hours of operation over the Christmas period. Lifeguards will patrol from 9am until 7pm seven days a week, beginning 12 December.

“We’ll close on Christmas Day, because even lifeguards need a break, but reopen on Boxing Day,” confirms Mr Lucas.

With up to 200 Splash ‘n’ Play fans keen to use the inflatables at any one time, barriers have now been installed to assist with crowd control.

Mr Lucas reiterates that only 15 people should be on the toys at once, and that there is a complete alcohol ban at Pandora Pond. People are welcome to bring dogs “but they must remain on the lead at all times, and shouldn’t be encouraged onto the inflatables – they are for two legged creatures only!” says Mr Lucas.

Overall, behaviour in and around the Splash ‘n’ Play has been “very good,” says Mr Lucas.

“People have been taking responsibility for themselves and for others, but it’s always pertinent to remind ourselves that safety is something we all have a hand in, and that it’s only fun as long as there are no accidents. Kids do need to be supervised by their parent or guardian – even when the lifeguards are on duty.”

Splash ‘n’ Play is supported by Napier Port. Nobody should be accessing the toys when the playground is closed, Mr Lucas says.

For more information see www.napier.govt.nz keyword #pandorasplashplay

7 December 2016

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