By Brenda L. Holmes
The Hendricks County Convention and Visitors Bureau teamed up with the Plainfield Parks and Recreation Department to offer a pool-side event for friends and family on Tuesday.
“We had about 250 people come and we were pretty happy about that,” said Jaime Bohler Smith, associate director of the Hendricks County Convention and Visitors Bureau.
Both entities had two missions in mind — to showcase a local destination and to get more photos and video of Splash Island.
“We have regular meetings with our tourism partners,” Bohler Smith said. “We thought this would be a great way to showcase one of our destinations. Instead of hosting a breakfast, we thought it would be a great way for our partners to experience what our visitors experience.”
The HCCVB invited their partners in the convention and visitors industry, including employees from hotels and volunteers from community events like Wings of Golf and Taste of Hendricks County.
“These are people we work with on a regular basis,” Bohler Smith said.
She added the HCCVB and the parks department are always in need of new photography and video work of Splash Island for promotional reasons.
“And when you need to get waivers and names, it was nice to do it this way,” Bohler Smith said. “We just had people sign waivers when they came in. We had two photographers and one videographer.”
They were able to capture more than 1,000 photos and shot almost four hours of video for promotions.
“And these will not just come here to the HCCVB,” Bohler Smith said. “We will be making copies of everything for the Plainfield parks.”
She said she had a great time visiting with attendees and checking out the venue herself.
One of the main attractions for the evening was the new leisure river feature that was completed just in time to begin the season.
“We’ve heard lots of great comments about it this summer,” said Clay Chafin, Plainfield’s director of parks and recreation. “It’s a great family attraction, too, since families can float together down the river.”
Since children are heading back to school, Splash Island will cut its hours beginning next week.
“School starts in Plainfield on Aug. 8, but that doesn't mean the heat will go away,” said Chafin. “Being open on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday nights will give people a chance to cool off in the evenings. This summer has been a hot one, even in the evenings. We don’t anticipate that will change. We also hope the reduced prices will enable even more families to come enjoy the amenities we have here at Splash Island.”
The Endless Summer Nights & Weekends schedule will have the facility open from 5 to 9 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. The weekend schedule remains the same with the park being open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and noon to 6 p.m. Sundays.
There is a price reduction with the new hours. Plainfield residents will be admitted for $4.75 and non-residents for $6.50.
The Endless Summer Nights & Weekends will continue through Labor Day, Sept. 3. Hours will be from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Labor Day.
The park will then close for humans but will re-open for the Puppy Pool Party for dogs on Sept. 8 and 9. More information on that event will be available soon.
The indoor pool at the Plainfield Recreation Center will be closed for its annual maintenance Aug. 13 to 17.
“The shutdown gives us time to do deep cleaning we can’t do otherwise,” said Chafin. “In addition, we’ll be redoing the locker room floors in both the men’s and women’s areas with a new epoxy coating. Upstairs we’re converting a storage room into an additional fitness room.
“But probably the most exciting thing we’re doing during the shutdown will be a renovation in the women’s locker room,” he said. “We will be removing lockers in one section and replacing them with countertops of various heights for sitting and standing to allow members an easier way to get ready for work. We’re putting in additional mirrors, lighting, and electrical outlets, too. This is all being done in anticipation of opening earlier in the fall. We’ve had a lot of requests for this, particularly from women who want to work out in the mornings.”
Chafin also said that the indoor Splash Island water park will be closed starting Aug. 11 while work is done in that area of the building.
“We anticipate as much as six weeks will be needed to perform the necessary work, but if all goes well, we will be able to open sooner,” said Chafin.
Scheduled classes and lap swimming during that time will either be transferred to the outdoor pool or to Clarks Creek Elementary’s indoor pool. Chafin added that none of this will affect the outdoor Splash Island water park.