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This page is a General News' Page covering
the development of the Chilli Bay Water Park.

>> For pricing, hours, and details on Swim Lessons, visit the
Chillicothe Parks & Rec website's Water Park page.

2018 Season News

Starting August 12, 2018, Weekend hours ONLY:
Saturday and Sunday - 1pm to 6pm
Monday, September 3 - 12 to 5pm
We will finish the season with our annual DOGGIE DIP - 5pm to 6pm, Monday, September 3
Pups $5 and People Free!

2017 Season News

September 6, 2017 - The last day of the swim season went to the dogs... literally. There were 46 pooches of all sizes that tested the waters during the annual doggy dip at Chilli Bay Water Park. Admission was $5 per dog with proceeds going to the Tina Mapel Memorial Dog Park.

SEASON SUMMARY: The 2017 Chilli Bay Water Park season closed out with just shy of 30,000 daily attendance visits according to Parks Director Josh Norris. This figure does not include special events or private parties. The facility averaged 370 visits per day, with the biggest day being Saturday, June 10, when attendance reached 661. There were 12 days that saw more than 500 guests. The facility was open 80 days this season and was closed four days due to inclement weather. There were 171 who attended movie night and 354 who attended a special late-night swim.

C-T 06 09 17 - Chilli Bay Water Park opened for its fifth summer season on Memorial Day to a crowd of 512 people and 2,862 through the opening week. Close to last year's starting marks, and up almost 65 percent from a cool weather opening two years ago, the water park has continued to raise summer totals the last four years. In addition to the pace of attendance, last summer a fourth slide was installed and only available for Labor Day weekend. This year, all four big slides are open for the entire summer.

C-T Photo / Jaime Saucedo

According to city officials, the attendance on Saturday, June 10, 2017, reached 661. That set the all-time one-day record for the water. 2017 is on a strong pace for Chilli Bay and could surpass last season's attendance totals.


Archived News

Making a Splash
Chilli Bay Water Park is hot spot to cool off
Submitted Photo - CT 07/24/2013

CAPTION: This aerial picture provides a comprehensive view of the new Chilli Bay Water Park in Chillicothe's Simpson Park. A $4.2 million renovation project included two large slides (shown at the top right of the photo), a family slide/children's play area in the northwest pool (upper left), underwater seating, a log roll, climbing wall, basketball hoop and high and low dives in the southwest pool (bottom left), and the addition of a lazy river at the east end of the facility. The parking lot was also expanded.

Despite a late start because of cool weather, Chillicothe's new Chilli Bay Water Park is posting high attendance numbers. The highest attendance for a single day topped out with 945 swimmers taking advantage of the region's newest water recreation destination. The most swimmers attending during a seven-day period was 3,795.

The water park opened June 7 and, since that time, total attendance has exceeded 22,000 according to Water Park Manager Janice Shaffer. Many of those attendees are season pass holders, although visitors have come from Hawaii, California, Colorado and Oklahoma. A large volume of visitors also keeps the concessions stand busy. Among other items, there have been 237 Chilli Bay refillable sports bottles sold, and 720 M&M ice cream sandwiches sold.

In contrast to opening day, when air temperature and water temperature barely reached the required 70 degrees, the water temperature is now at 80.

The new facility, being paid for through an existing capital improvement sales tax, has been welcomed by those attending. "I have heard positive comments from visitors near and far," Shaffer said. The last major pool renovation took place in 1993. "I have watched the old come down and watched skilled professionals rebuild, renovate and renew our pool into a unique water park, where a family can literally 'get away' within a few minutes' drive," Shaffer said.

The new facility is divided into age-appropriate zones. In the zero-depth entry pool, there is a children's slide and spray feature as well as a low-angle family slide. In another pool is a log roll, a rock-climbing wall, a high diving board and a low diving board. There are also two more slides: a high-speed enclosed tubular slide, and an inner tube slide leading into the lazy river. Perhaps the biggest draw of Chilli Bay is the lazy river at the east end of the water park. The water park has lots of shade and some underwater bench seating. The facility has an island theme with Tiki huts, Tiki-like carvings, surf boards and palm trees.

Chilli Bay Opens With a Splash
Water Park - the region's newest water destination - located in Chillicothe's Simpson Park - opened for business Friday afternoon.
Catherine Storz Ripley / Updated Jun. 10, 2013
All C-T Photos / Austin Buckner

C-T Photo / Austin Buckner

CAPTION: Chilli Bay Water Park, the $4.2 million aquatic center in Simpson Park, opened Friday afternoon. The park welcomed guests for a grand opening event on Saturday. The first group of attendees received Hawaiian leis. According to Water Park Manager Janice Shaffer, over 400 local swimmers participated in Saturday's grand opening. The Chillicothe Area Chamber of Commerce will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the water park at 10 a.m. on Wednesday.

Chilli Bay Water Park, the region's newest water destination - located in Chillicothe's Simpson Park - opened for business Friday afternoon. There was a 30-minute delay in the anticipated noon opening because the air temperature had not yet reached 70 degrees. But, once the mercury hit that mark, the doors opened and the new $4.2 million facility was greeted with cheers from anxious guests. The day topped out at just 73 degrees, but the temperature did little to douse excitement. "It was a cool opening temperature-wise, but people were ready to play, swim, and see our city pool open," said manager Janice Shaffer.

The water park was a long-time in coming, with site work staring shortly after the close of last year's swimming season. "This community has rallied around this project in a way that only Chillicothe does," Shaffer said. "The excitement started when the first demolition took place."

As construction began taking shape early this spring, traffic from onlookers increased. Features of the facility were determined through a rating process involving the public. "Every feature is fun," Shaffer said. The water park is divided into age-appropriate zones. In the zero-depth entry pool, there is a children's slide and spray feature as well as a low-angle family slide. In another pool is a log roll, a rock-climbing wall, a high diving board and a low diving board. There are also two more slides: a high-speed enclosed tubular slide, and an inner tube slide leading into the lazy river. Perhaps, the biggest draw of Chilli Bay is the lazy river at the east end of the water park. "Everyone is excited about the lazy river," Shaffer said. "People have as much fun sitting around it as going through it."

The water park has lots of shade and some underwater bench seating. The facility has an island theme with Tiki huts, Tiki-like carvings, surf boards and palm trees.

More than 400 swimmers attended Saturday's grand opening. Guests received Hawaiian leis while supplies lasted. The temperature topped out at 80 degrees. The crowd was down on Sunday, and because of cool weather, the facility did not open until 1 p.m. The water park operates with the 70-70 rule, meaning that the water temperature as well as the air temperature must be at least 70 degrees before the opening. Sunday's high reached 76 degrees. "The swimmers over this weekend are die-hard pool loving fans," the manager stated.

The water park is open from noon until 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and from noon until 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. A special "It's 5 o'clock Chilli Here" package is available to allow families of four to come after 5 p.m. to enjoy two hours of swim Monday through Friday for $10. Regular pool admission, $5 for children in kindergarten through 12th grade, $6 for adults, and $3 for senior citizens. Children of preschool age or younger are admitted at no charge. Individual and family season passes are also available for purchase.

The facility is being paid for through an existing capital improvements sales tax. The last major pool renovation took place in 1993.

At the water park's busiest times, there will be 21 lifeguards, 18 of whom are on deck at all times.

Shaffer said it was a successful opening weekend and that she is looking forward to a busy season. "It has been well received," Shaffer said of the facility. "We had full families, moms and dads bringing kiddos, and just as significant are the kiddos 9 and above who I know we will see all summer long. I can't wait until the weather catches up with enthusiasm."


Chilli Bay Water Park Opens
After a delay because of construction and cool spring weather, Chilli Bay Water Park, Chillicothe's new $4.2 million facility, opened shortly after noon today (Friday).
Jun. 7, 2013

C-T Photo / Austin Buckner

CAPTION: Chilli Bay lifeguards Blake Rasmussen (left) and Jacob Lewis (right) make final preparations prior to the water park's opening this afternoon (Friday). A grand opening event will be held at noon tomorrow (Saturday), with a ribbon cutting at 10 a.m. Wednesday, June 12.

After a delay because of construction and cool spring weather, Chilli Bay Water Park, Chillicothe's new $4.2 million facility, opened shortly after noon today (Friday). A grand opening is scheduled for noon tomorrow (Saturday). Hawaiian leis will be distributed for the first group of customers while supplies last.

The facility operates under the 70-70 rule, meaning that both the air temperature and the water temperature must be at least 70 degrees before opening. While the facility was substantially complete earlier, the water temperature has been under 70. Work continued at the facility this week.

A ribbon-cutting event hosted by the Chillicothe Area Chamber of Commerce will be held at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, June 12, during the Mayor's Coffee, and tours will be offered.

Chilli Bay will host several special events and special pricing over the course of the summer and will be announced on the radio and in the newspaper.

Mayor Chuck Haney said he appreciated the citizens and Park Board members who participated in the surveys and supported the workshops in order to make Chilli Bay a reality. "This a special facility, that is unique and adds to the quality of life in Chillicothe," Haney said. Also, he thanked Josh Norris and Janice Shaffer for getting this facility ready and providing a professional family fun destination for everyone.


Family Slide Just One of Many New Features at Chilli Bay
The family slide at Chilli Bay Water Park is just one of the features at the new facility.
Updated Jun. 7, 2013

The family slide at Chilli Bay Water Park is just one of the features at the new facility. The wide, low-angle slide allows for a fun and safe entry into the shallow children's pool. Chilli Bay Water Park opened today (Friday) with a grand opening scheduled for noon tomorrow (Saturday).

Uncooperative Weather Causes More Chilli Bay Delays
June 3, 2013

C-T Photo / Austin Buckner

The pools have been filled. The slides have been erected. The only thing causing delays in the opening of Chilli Bay Water Park is a lack of cooperation from Mother Nature. Per the 70-70 rule, both the air and water temperature must reach 70 degrees before the facility can open. With more rain and cooler temps in the forecast, that may not be this week.

Chilli Bay Water Park Nears Completion
Opening day still in question
Updated May. 29, 2013

CAPTION: Chilli Bay Water Park is expected to be completed by Friday, weather permitting; however, it may be next week before the facility opens to the public. The water temperature and air temperature both must be at least 70 degrees. The water temperature Tuesday evening was around 58 degrees.

C-T Photo / Catherine Stortz Ripley

Chilli Bay Water Park should be completed by this Friday (weather permitting), but the opening date is still undecided. City Administrator Ike Holland stated Tuesday evening that the $4.2 million facility in Simpson Park will likely be finished this week, but because of the 70-70 rule and anticipated rains and cool weather, the opening day may not come until after this weekend.

The 70-70 rule calls for both the water temperature and air temperature to be a minimum of 70 degrees before the facility can open. The National Weather Service has forecast rain throughout this week and, after today, daytime highs in the 70s and overnight lows in the 50s and 60s this week. Last year at this time, Chillicothe had already experienced 21 days in May with 80-plus degree weather. This May, there have been just six days when the mercury surpassed the 80-degree mark. Nine days this May had low temperatures below 50 (compared to just two last year).

Lifeguards are completing their training, with many already having been certified as of Tuesday night. Because of the water park's construction, some training took place earlier at the YMCA. Additional training for the specific water features and concessions area workers is expected to be completed this week.

All of the slides - including an inner tube slide, a family slide and an enclosed tube slide are all in place at the water park, as are the rock-climbing wall, log roll, basketball goal and children's spray feature. Also part of the facility is a handicap lift that can be moved to multiple locations. The entire facility is ADA compliant. Office equipment has yet to be put in place. Diving boards are expected to be erected later this week.

Most of the facility's construction is complete, according to Josh Norris, director of parks and recreation. General cleanup and the addition of theme items have yet to take place, was well as vacuuming the pools and checking chemical levels.

The facility will have a few stationary lifeguard stations, but most of the lifeguards will be "roaming" to provide optimum safety for water park guests.

The sale of season passes continues, with the count at 165 passes (mostly family passes) having been sold.

Chilli Bay Crews Fill Lazy River
May 22, 2013

Josh Norris, Director of Chillicothe Parks and Recreation, surveys the 'Lazy River' pool at the new Chilli Bay Water Park.

C-T Photo / Austin Buckner

Crews filled the Lazy River and the largest pool in the park this week. Norris said the plan is to test out lifeguards this weekend, with a Saturday, June 1, opening.

Delayed Opening for Chili Bay Water Park
Construction continues at Chilli Bay Water Park in Simpson Park this week.
May 21, 2013

C-T Photo / Austin Buckner

The city had been shooting for a Memorial Day Weekend opening. Josh Norris, Director of Chillicothe Parks and Recreation, said the May snowfall and rain has delayed work at the aquatic center. Norris hopes to open the park on Saturday, June 1, just two days after schools let out on Thursday, May 30.

More Slides at Chilli Bay
May 20 2013 CT

C-T Photo / Austin Buckner

Construction crews at Chilli Bay Water Park continued work over the weekend. This photo taken Saturday shows part of the enclosed tube slide in place. As of Friday's statistics, the city had sold 150 season passes to the water park for the Summer 2013 season.

Chilli Bay Slide Installation
May 14, 2013

C-T Photo / Austin Buckner

Warm and dry weather conditions have allowed the workers at Chilli Bay Water Park to make a great deal of progress over the past couple of weeks. This week, workers began installation on the first of the park's several waterslides. Painting of the pools and buildings is nearing completion.

Chilli Bay Work
May 9 2013 CT

C-T Photo / Austin Buckner

Workers at Chilli Bay finish the staining of the main entrance building yesterday (Wednesday) afternoon. Warm and dry conditions earlier this week helped workers finish much of the painting inside the water park, as well as installation of many faux palm trees and a Tiki hut.

Chill Bay Slides Arrive
May 6, 2013 CT

C-T Photo / Austin Buckner

The slides for Chillicothe's Chilli Bay Water Park arrived this past weekend. Workers pictured here prep the sides of the slides for installation. Wet and muddy conditions have caused some delays.

Chilli Bay Still Eyes May 25 Opening
Painting begins, slides expected by week's end
April 30, 2013 - Catherine Storz Ripley
Chillicothe News - Chillicothe, MO

C-T Photos / Catherine Stortz Ripley

CAPTION: The 220-foot lazy river is now an empty concrete path, but soon will be filled with flowing water. Chillicothe City Council members toured the construction site of Chilli Bay Water Park Monday evening prior to their regular semi-monthly meeting. Work was continuing well past 5 p.m. as crews were putting the first of three coats of paint on one of the pools, and moving steel into place for water slides. The fiberglass slides are expected to be installed later this week.

With less than four weeks remaining until Memorial Day weekend - the traditional start of the swimming season - Chilli Bay Water Park is a bevy of activity with the hope that the $4.2 million facility will be opened by the holiday weekend. Steel structures for the slides went up over the weekend, and the actual fiberglass slides are expected to be installed later this week. The extended parking lot area is scheduled for paving later this week, as well, as long as the weather remains dry.

C-T Photos / Catherine Stortz Ripley

Chillicothe City Council members gathered for their regular semi-monthly meeting Monday evening at City Hall, but began their activities with a site visit to the water park in Simpson Park. City Administrator Ike Holland said the hope is that the water park will open Saturday, May 25.

April 29, 2013
C-T Photo / Catherine Stortz Ripley

CAPTION: Chilli Bay Water Park construction workers used the better part of the warmer weather over the weekend to continue work on the new structures throughout the park. Crew members were working on several new structures, including the stairs (pictured above) on Saturday and even Sunday through the evening hours. Crews are continuing to work so that the anticipated opening date of Saturday, May 25 is met. Saturday saw a trace of rain while Sunday was sunny.

Chilli Bay Progress
04/24/13 CT

CAPTION: The Chilli Bay Water Park in Simpson Park is a bevy of activity these days as workers are found throughout the facility getting the place ready for the anticipated Saturday, May 25, opening. A Chilli Bay Water Park sign was placed on the faciloty today (Wednesday). Chillicothe City Council members on Tuesday approved the low bid for the purchase of 30 artificial palm trees to complement the water park's island theme.

C-T Photos / Catherine Stortz Ripley

C-T Photo / Catherine Stortz Ripley

Chilli Bay 75 Percent Complete
April 12, 2013
Chillicothe Constitution-Tribune

C-T Photo / Catherine Stortz Ripley

CAPTION: Work continues at Chilli Bay Water Park in Simpson Park. The $4.2 million project is about 75 percent complete, and officials anticipate the project to be substantially completed by the first week in May. The pools are expected to be filled around mid-May, with opening set for Saturday, May 25.

Construction of the new city-owned Chilli Bay Water Park in Simpson Park is on schedule, with opening day set for Saturday, May 25. The project is about 75 percent complete, according to City Administrator Ike Holland. Holland met with representatives of the project contractor, 2 Point Construction, Thursday afternoon and said that the project is poised to be substantially completed by the first week in May and that water will fill the facility around mid-May. "A lot of things are going to happen in the next three weeks," Holland said.

During the next week or two, many of the pool's features will be installed, including a big slide as well as play activities for the younger guests (slide, ladders, sprayers).

Weather delayed work on the expanded parking lot, but it is anticipated that the lot will be finished within the next week or two. "2 Point Construction is doing a very good job, especially under the circumstances of the cold weather," Holland said.

The park is designed to divide up activities by age groups - including an area targeted to appeal to young children up through 8 or 9 years of age, and an area designed for children ages 10 to 18.

CAPTION: The new water park will have areas that can be rented for special gatherings, including birthday parties.

CAPTION: The concrete has been poured for the 220-foot lazy river, in a new area just east of the main pool areas. The lazy river will have a wave machine to create a water current that is intended to be relaxing to guests while providing them with a sense of motion.

Contractor Updates Council on Water Park
02 27 13

Snow has piled up outside, slowing construction of the city's new water park, Chilli Bay. However, as of yet, the project is running generally on schedule and crews anticipate adding Fridays into their work scheduled to make up for lost time due to inclement weather. The contractor on the project, 2-Point Construction Company, updated Chillicothe City Council members on the progress Monday evening, February 25, 2013, stating that the quality of the project is excellent, the costs are in line with the budget and the time frame is generally as expected. Crews have starting laying tile in the bath house, and a structure to the north of the building has been built. The goal, as of Monday, was to have all of the concrete for the pool areas poured by the end of next week. The concrete would then cure for 28 days before being painted.

Janice Shaffer, recently hired as the seasonal aquatics manager for Chilli Bay, was present at Monday night's meeting and said she was pleased with the project's progress and the communication that has taken place with the contractor, noting that all those involved want things to go well for the community.

Council Gets Water Park Progress Report
January 30, 2013

Chilli Bay, Chillicothe's new water park, is taking shape as much work was completed during January. 2 Point Construction Company, the contractor on the project, provided an update for Chillicothe City Council members during their workshop meeting Monday evening at City Hall. The workshop preceded the council's regular meeting.

Plumbing is completed for the 220-foot lazy river, which included installation of an 18-inch pipe. The contractor plans to pour slabs for the lazy river during the next few weeks, weather permitting. Work on the main pool area is about complete, council members were told, with some of the pool benches having been installed. The contractor anticipated completing the benches this week.

It was noted on Monday that the ADA ramp at the northwest corner of the area also has been completed, as well as the floors poured in the bath house. The contractor stated that extreme cold weather caused some plumbing delays, but overall, the project is on schedule.

Family Slide To Be Part of Water Park
Jan. 15, 2013 11:11 am

CAPTION: Construction continues at Chilli Bay, Chillicothe's new water park, which will open in Simpson Park this summer. The water park is anticipated to be a recreation destination and, among other amenities, will feature a children's area with a water playground apparatus (with a slide and sprays), an area of pop-up sprays, a family slide, a teen area (with basketball, log roll, rock wall, two diving boards, and a swimming area), a tube slide, a lazy river (with a connecting slide), a Tiki cabana area, and a renovated bath house.


Construction continues at Chilli Bay, Chillicothe's new water park which will be opened this summer, and the latest feature to be added to the park will be a family water slide.

Chillicothe City Council members, during their regular meeting Monday evening in the council chambers at City Hall voted 3-2 in favor of a change order to include the slide. The family slide was part of the original bid as an alternate feature, to be added only if funds allowed. "At the time, we didn't know how much it would cost for the issuance of bonds, nor the interest rate," said City Administrator Ike Holland. "...but we got a good interest rate and kept the costs down on the issuance."

The water park is a $4.2 million project by the city which will be paid for through an existing capital improvements sales tax. Adding the slide costs $59,000, but with its inclusion, the project remains within the budgeted $4.2 million.

There had been some discussion about installing pipes that could accommodate the family slide if the city decided to add that feature in the future. However, it was noted during the meeting that it would be more expensive to add the slide at a later date. Administrator Holland recommended the addition now. "It is one more thing that could attract people from surrounding communities," he said.

Second Ward Councilman Wayne Cunningham advocated a more conservative approach by not adding the family slide at this time. He noted a weakened economy and concern that sales tax revenues may not come in as anticipated. Cunningham and 4th Ward Councilwoman Pam Jarding voted against the addition.

The capital improvements sales tax fund generates around $800,000 a year. Through the financing package already approved for the project, the city will be paying around $500,000 a year for seven years.

Chilli Bay Water Park is anticipated to be a recreation destination and will feature a concessions area, a children's area (equipped with a water playground apparatus with slide and sprays), an area of pop-up sprays, a family slide, a teen area (with basketball, log roll, rock wall, two diving boards and a swimming area), a general slide (tube slide), a lazy river (with a connecting slide), a Tiki cabana area (available for party rental), a renovated bath house, a manager's office, a lifeguard locker room, and family changing room.

Pipeline Leak Delays Possible Family Slide at Chilli Bay
By Drew Van Dyke, C-T Writer
Dec. 18, 2012 noon

A proposed contract change order by Chillicothe City Administrator Ike Holland for the inclusion of a $59,000 family water slide feature within the currently under-construction Chilli Bay water park was put on hold during Monday night's Chillicothe City Council meeting after a workshop meeting prior revealed a leak in one of the former Chillicothe Aquatics Center's re-circulation lines that may require excess funds to repair or replace for reuse. Holland explained that it had been two months since the bid for building the water park (as provided by 2 Point Construction Company, LLC) was approved by the council and that they had selected five additive alternates to the park bid, which they could include in the bid within 45 days of the bid's approval. "That 45 days has since passed," Holland said. Because of this, a contract change order had to be implemented to include the family water slide.

A change order is work that is added to or deleted from the original scope of work of a contract, which alters the original contract amount and/or completion date. They are considered very common in large projects such as the city's $4.2 million water park and can include the addition of features or options requested. "[During our visit to the water park construction site,] Wayne [Cunningham, Second Ward Councilman] asked me: 'Ike, is that family slide important?'" Holland said. "I think it is important."

Going through the finances of the project, with one alternate added to the contract, owner's allowance costs would decrease from $100,000 to $88,216, bringing total owner's allowance for the project down from $4,147,120 to $4,135,336. Survey costs ($5,300), geotechnical costs ($9,500), design professional fee (approximately 9.6 percent, at $352,320), design/architect reimbursables ($10,000), and construction costs (without alternates, $3,670,000) would all remain stagnant whether one or no alternates were added. The family slide is listed at (per a month-old price quote, which Holland said could go up anywhere from $100 to $1,000 if the council did not act fairly soon on the matter) $59,000, and additional design fees for one alternate of $5,664 would bring the final tally up to the proposed $4.2 million from that $4,135,336 figure.

The council voiced their support of the addition of this specific water slide, as it would provide a more family-friendly compliment to the speed slide and enclosed tube slide currently planned for the water park (an open-flume slide, which would be located near the speed slide, is another of the council's additive alternates, and is not currently planned for the project at this time); however, word from 2 Point representatives at the Chilli Bay workshop meeting held just prior to the meeting led to a bit of hesitation to motion for the change order on their part.

During the workshop meeting, 2 Point revealed that a few weeks ago, a quarter-sized hole had been found in a recirculation between the former aquatics center dive pool and the water slide plunge pool - a line they had planned to re-use within the new water park - which they had promptly fitted with a seal coupling and buried, to see if the fix would hold up under weight. The representatives stated that they did not know what had caused the hole, but suggested that perhaps a bucket had struck it during construction, also noting in opposition of that theory that the area surrounding the leak had been moist prior to digging. The hole was wider on the outside than on the inside, they noted. Council members Cunningham and Tom Douglas expressed a desire for the crews to dig out the line and check to make sure the entire pipeline was not experiencing failures, which 2 Point agreed would be a good idea. They conveyed that a local subcontractor had stated that he "didn't think [the pipeline] was in the greatest of shape." "I'd like to make sure that we're not going to get this park done and before we get it open, there are more leaks," Cunningham said. I think it's prudent to see what kind of problems we have with this pipe," Councilman-at-Large David Moore agreed.

Holland also appeared in agreement with this assessment, and it was suggested that 2 Point look into possible further damage to the pipeline and if said damage existed that they quote an accurate price for repairs or line replacement before the council decided whether or not they had adequate funding for inclusion of the family water slide. The Jan. 10, 2013 meeting was presented as a possible timetable to work towards.

Holland noted that the council had set aside approximately $80,000 for problems like this within the project.

Chilli Bay update workshops will continue to take place prior to the second council meeting of each month through May, it was announced. Workshops for the new Hedrick Medical Center are held prior to the first council meeting of the month.

City Approves Financing for Chilli Bay Waterpark
12 12 12 CT

The city of Chillicothe formally entered into a lease purchase transaction to finance the development of Chilli Bay Water Park. Representatives from bonding counsel Gilmore and Bell, as well as Stifel-Nicolaus, underwriter, met with city council members during their regular council meeting Monday evening and reviewed the financing package before council members gave their nod of approval.

The project, which involves expanding and transforming the existing municipal aquatic center into a water park, involved issuing $4.2 million in tax-exempt, bank-qualified certificates of participation that will be paid for through the city's capital improvements sales tax fund. Carl Ramey, with Stifel-Nicolaus, stated that he had been "astounded" by the great interest shown in the transaction earlier that day, which allowed the cost of borrowing money to drop to a true interest cost rate of 2.172 percent, with an all-inclusive interest cost of 2.4588 percent. "Two percent interest in today's market is incredible," he stated. The low rate was secured in part, he explained, because of the city's credit history, that the COP issuance is a bank-qualified transaction, and because of Stifel-Nicolaus' history. Forty percent of the certificates were sold locally, with the rest being sold nationally. The wide distribution shows competition, Ramey said.

The total debt service will be $4,826,874. The first interest payment is to be made July 15, 2013, and the first principal payment to be made on Jan. 15, 2014. The certificates mature in 2023, but can be refinanced or paid off early without penalty.

Water Park Plan Advances
10 23 12

Chillicothe City Council members Monday evening accepted the bid from 2 Point Construction, of Lenexa, Kansas, to transform and expand Chillicothe's existing aquatic center into a themed water park.

The council, also on Monday, approved a $4.2 million finance package from Stifel Nicolaus and Company, Inc., for the water park, which will be named Chilli Bay. Stifel Nicolaus and Company will provide investment banking services in regard to financing the water park project. Certificates of participation will be sold for the project, the same method used to finance the pool's renovation about 20 years ago. The interest rate is expected to be set in December, and the city anticipates payments of $500,000 a year for 10 years, or less. The renovation will be paid for through an existing half-cent sales tax. That tax generates nearly $800,000 annually.

Five bids were submitted for the Chilli Bay project, ranging in price from base bids of $3,670,000 to $3,960,000. 2 Point Construction's bid was the lowest of all submitted.

Features of the new water park will include a plunge pool, a lazy river, an enclosed flume water slide, an open raft water slide, one-meter springboard diving, three-meter springboard diving, log roll, water spray features, a water play structure, wave generator and other related items. The bathhouse and filter building will also be renovated. Site work will include walks, parking areas, fencing, and a concrete deck.

The council approved 2 Point Construction's bid, while retaining the right to add alternates to the scope of project within 45 days. The council, at this time, anticipates adding a family slide (a slide allowing up to four people to go down the slide at one time) in the children's area to the project.

It is anticipated that the company will begin site work next week, with the target completion date being early May, weather permitting.

Action on the water park issues took place during a special meeting of the city council Monday and both the bid and finance proposals were accepted with 4-0 votes. Councilman Wayne Cunningham, who was present for the meeting, excused himself from discussions and votes concerning the water park, citing potential conflicts.

City Advances Chilli Bay Plans
09 25 12 (Excerpt City Council Meeting 09/24/12)

Chillicothe City Council members briefly discussed options before giving approval to the mascot and logo for Chilli Bay, the city's new water park, expected to open next year. The council supported the recommendation made by a committee that had explored options, and settled on a grinning shark. The committee's goal was to choose a mascot that is appealing, fun and playful for the entire family, recognizable from a distance, unique, something children would find attractive, and something which could be used on everything from coffee mugs to T-shirts. The designs considered were professionally made and trademarked. It cost $299 for these designs to be made.

City Council Approves $4.2 Million Dollar Aquatic Center

The City of Chillicothe will have a NEW Aquatic Center. The Chillicothe City Council approved the latest presentation for the Aquatic Center during the August 13, 2012, council meeting. The facility will cost $4.2 million dollars and now includes improvements to the Bath House and parking. City Administrator Ike Holland had originally recommended phasing in some items, including the bath house and parking improvements.

Amenities included in the new pool consist of a shallow water play structure, zero depth entrance and activities, water slides, including a family slide, in water seating, a basket ball goal, log roll, climbing wall and improved diving area. There will also be a Lazy River with waves and an open raft water slide into the lazy river. Councilman At Large and Finance Chair David Moore told the council the City has the money available.

Potential Features for new aquatic center
Jun 27, 2012 CT

The city of Chillicothe has been soliciting public input about what features are most desired for a water park to replace the existing aquatic center. The photographs in this section show features that could be included in the park. Members of the public were asked to rank their preferences for features they would most like to see in the park. The features were divided into three categories: Large Features, Play/Spray Features (Moderate features), and Water Slides. The public is also being asked to suggest themes and names for the new facility, or select one from a list of suggestions. The photos and feature suggestions are provided by Water's Edge Aquatic Design, of Lenexa, Kansas, which has been retained by the city for this project. The proposed water park is expected to be open for operation starting May 2013. (Not all features available are reflected in the photos below). See more photos on the CT website.

Excerpted from City Council Meeting 06/25/12...

Also Monday, the council, with a 4-0 vote, passed a resolution dealing with a proposed new water park. Second Ward Councilman Wayne Cunningham abstained from the vote. The resolution stated that the city expects to make capital expenditures with the renovation and expansion of the swimming pool, including acquisition and installation of equipment, and that the city intends to reimburse itself for the expenditures with the proceeds of a lease purchase financing. The maximum principal amount of the lease purchase obligations expected to be entered into for the project is $2.5 million.

City Seeks Input for Water Park
First meeting held, two more scheduled
By Catherine Stortz Ripley, Constitution-Tribune, Jun 20, 2012

The city of Chillicothe conducted the first of three informational meetings to discuss their proposed water park, and to solicit input about what features are most desired there. The first meeting was Tuesday evening at City Hall. The next two will be at the Chillicothe Aquatics Center: tomorrow (Thursday), and Wednesday, June 27. Both meetings will begin at 6:30 p.m. Following these meetings, the issue is expected to be presented to the Chillicothe City Council in July.

Representatives from Water's Edge Aquatic Design, which has been retained by the city for this project, on Tuesday highlighted possible elements of the water park - ranging from slides and large features (such as a flow rider and lazy river) to smaller play and spray features (such as underwater bench, toddler slide, floatables, and log roll). For each of the three categories, those in attendance were invited to rank what they desired most at the water park.

Shaded areas (including shaded areas within the water), a concessions area, water sprays for younger children and at least one slide are, at this point, being termed as definite features of the water park. A diving board area is also strongly suggested.

Jeff Bartley, of Water's Edge Aquatic Design, stated that there was a trend during the 1990s for communities to remove diving boards from their swimming pools. However, he said, the places that eliminated the diving areas and went to only shallow area pools, have since regretted that decision.

Part of the community meeting effort is to develop a theme and name for the water park. Branding the facility is a no-cost investment that could make the facility more attractive, as well as create marketing possibilities, according to City Administrator Ike Holland. He said that he envisions the facility to complement other local amenities, and to be a destination for people from other communities. He said the city will also consider contracting with private vendors to sell T-shirts, cups and souvenirs to customers.

Construction of the water park is targeted to start this fall after the pool closes and be completed by spring opening next year.

The existing pool is about 50 years old, and was renovated about 20 years ago. "We have done many upgrades over the years, but the cost is not exceeding the benefits," Holland said. A new facility idea was developed several years ago, and was approved by the current city council earlier this year. "A new water park is now the norm for most cities, and Chillicothe wants to provide a facility that has the newest and most requested features from our patrons," Holland said.

The water park project is estimated to cost $2 million, and would be financed through a loan. It would draw its revenue from the city's capital improvement sales tax. In the past, this tax has been used for buildings, the park, ballfields, the current pool, and other capital projects that the city council approves yearly. The renovation is also anticipated to include an expansion.

During Tuesday's meeting, Holland addressed operational costs of a revamped recreational water facility. Traditionally, the operational cost for water and chemicals should be lower because there will be features that do not require the water, chemicals and space that a "lap pool" costs and uses. Employee numbers may increase for concessions and lifeguards, he said. "We hope to reduce costs by not using lifeguards in areas where assistants can fulfill the safety requirements and with a new menu, increase sales in the concessions," he said. Whatever plan is chosen, Holland said, the city will try to keep costs down by utilizing portions of the existing aquatic center. Although the current entryway and bath house is expected to be retained, it would undergo updates to make it more inviting. "We want to make a nice presentation," he said. "When you go to a place like this, you want it to be a pleasant experience." The city will also look into having expanded hours.

The cost for admission is unknown at this point, but it will be in line with other cities that have similar facilities, Holland said. Season passes will also be made available. In Pella, Iowa, a locale visited by Holland and Parks Superintendent Josh Norris, an individual season pass was $88, compared to Chillicothe's fee of $80. Daily admission at the Pella water park was $7 per adult, compared to Chillicothe's current daily admission of $4.50.

Meetings for the Discussion of the Proposed Water Park
14 June 2012

The general public and special guests are requested to attend a meeting for the discussion of the proposed water park. The City Administrator will lead a discussion and there will be a question and answer period. Further, there will be surveys and ranking of the water park features that the City would like every citizen to participate in the process.

"It is important that people express their desires in this new Water Park," stated City Administrator Ike Holland. We want the community to provide suggestions on the theme and even suggested names for this unique facility. This facility will not only be an asset for the local residents to use, but draw more outside visitors to Chillicothe, resulting in greater revenue for the facility and local businesses that profit from visitors.

There will be surveys taken at the pool during the month of June. We will be asking young children to senior citizens, "What would make an ideal water park?" All information from the surveys and ideas submitted will be tallied and reviewed by the Water Park Committee. The City Council will make the final decisions on the theme, name, water features and cost of the project.

We have an engineer and architect on board, and the City Administrator and Park Superintendent toured three water parks this month. "We now have a better understanding of what are great water features and which ones are the most in demand by the public, by personally visiting the parks," said Superintendent Josh Norris.

To the City of Chillicothe Citizens, please attend one of the following meetings:

  • City Hall 6:30 pm 19 June 2012 Tuesday

  • City Pool 6:30 pm 21 June 2012 Thursday

  • City Pool 6:30 pm 27 June 2012 Wednesday

Note: surveys will be done at the swimming pool during the last two weeks of June by staff.

Council Approves Architect
May 30, 2012 CT
Water Park Discussion - City Council Meeting 05/29/12

City administrator Ike Holland took to the floor next, to address the planned water park, to be built where the current Chillicothe Aquatics Center now stands. "You can look at this in many different ways," Holland said of the water park idea. "You can do things in ordinary ways. I think this is an opportunity, possibly, to change our recreations department." Holland brought up Parks Department Head Josh Norris to speak to the council on their choice of architect, Water's Edge Aquatic Design, out of Lenexa, Kansas. Norris said that he and Holland were a part of a five-man committee (including councilman Tom Douglas, Jim Fox, and Janice Shaffer) who listened to presentations from four architects on April 17 regarding the water park construction project (10 architects responded to the advertisement and toured the facility with Holland and Norris on March 20, but only four presented to the committee in April). "I'm very pleased with the companies who submitted," Norris said. "One, in particular, stood out." Norris and Holland agreed that the main criterion which separated Water's Edge from its competitors were the company's references, the fact that they were the only "aquatic engineering" firm who presented to the committee, their familiarity with the existing facility (several workers with Water's Edge worked on the 1992 remodeling of the current Aquatics Center), and their overall planning process for the water park structure (the group included overhead shots of the pool with their preliminary possible renderings, and provided the city with multiple items and spaces to add to the water park, from which citizens of the town would be able to choose in town hall meetings, to be conducted in the not-so-distant future; they are also experienced in working on tight deadlines and with little space, such as this project offers). "One of the things we like to do is get the community involved," said Mike Fisher, a representative of Water's Edge, who was at the meeting. "The timeframe is relatively short. We've got basically a year."

"That's not a big area out there," councilwoman Pam Jarding said, addressing Fisher. Several others voiced their concerns about spacial issues, including the need for additional parking space in the area. "We hardly ever get enough space," Fisher said. "I think your budget will limit you more than your space." The city of Chillicothe has earmarked funds in the 2012-13 budget for the estimated $2 million water park. Regarding space issues, Holland said that plans were to expand the water park to possibly as far as the tennis courts on the eastern side of the current aquatics center structure. "[The size] will be double of what you are today," he said. He said that plans were to possibly add 20-30 additional parking spaces. "We can figure out more parking," he said.

Jarding asked Holland if the plan was to scrap the entire aquatics center as-is and start fresh or to add on to the current structure. "We're going to look at everything," Holland said. "Your old structure doesn't look that bad," Fisher added, mentioning the current diving well, which is only about 20 years old. The council voted 4-1 to allow Holland to set up a contract with Water's Edge Aquatic Design. Councilman Wayne Cunningham voted against the measure. "One, I'd like to understand better where the money's coming from," he said, in explanation of his negative vote near the end of the Tuesday meeting. "And I don't want this council to get labeled as a 'spending council.'" He noted the fact that both this measure and the new hospital were large funding projects which were not put to public vote, but which were, instead, approved by the council, as his reasoning. Holland told Cunningham that the funding for the water park was coming from a previously-approved tax (voted upon by citizens) and that he could tell persons who accused them of such that.

Water Park Planned
052312 By Catherine Stortz Ripley, CT

C-T Photo / Drew Van Dyke

CAPTION: The Chillicothe Aquatic Center is ready for swimmers on opening day, Monday, May 28, 2012. This season, however, may be the last for the pool as it looks today. The city is planning major renovations to convert the area into a water park by Memorial Day 2013.

While the start of the 2012 pool season is nearing, plans are in the works for a major remodel to be set in place by the start of next year's season. Specifics have yet to be identified, but money was earmarked in the city's 2012-13 budget to start on the creation of a water park estimated to cost around $2 million. Construction could start as early as this fall - after the aquatic center closes for the season. The tentative plan is to close the pool once school starts, rather than waiting until Labor Day weekend, then begin demolition of some of the existing facility. The main construction would start in spring 2013, and be completed by Memorial Day.

The city received proposals from four firms interested in providing design services for the project, and a committee of city representatives met with these companies on May 11. The city committee is comprised of the parks director, a council member, the mayor, two park board members, and the city administrator. The next step will be for the council to review and select an architectural design firm to construct the water park according to City Administrator Ike Holland. A recommendation is expected to be considered at the next council meeting, Tuesday, May 29.

Holland stated that after a rough concept of the water park is drafted, the city will have a series of public meetings in June and July to gather input from the community about what certain aspects of the water park should be included. "After that, we will look at what we have, compared to the original draft, and see what is doable," Holland stated.

The advertisement for design services stated that the desired features of the water park should include water slides, a lazy river, sprayground, zero-depth entry pool, water sports pool, water toys and play system, sunbathing area, sun shades, submerged seating, and possibly diving boards. The request for proposals also stated that a lap pool was not wanted. The renovation, Holland said, would likely include a lighting system that would accommodate evening swimming.

Consideration of replacing the existing aquatic center with a themed water park came as a recommendation from the park board, Holland said, noting that the city wants the facility to offer something unique to help draw people to Chillicothe. "It fits in perfectly with the new football stadium and new hospital, and hopefully, new businesses, as well as the existing amenities, such as the YMCA, golf course and movie theater," he said. "It goes along with things unexpected in a town our size."

The pool's last renovation was 20 years ago. Holland said the facility is getting to the point where it would need to be resealed around the pool and the bottom of the pool. He indicated that the new design may utilize parts of the existing facility, such as the bath house and diving area. "We may keep some of the current facility versus demolition of it all," he said.

Total cost for the project has yet to be identified; however, the city has set aside $365,000 in the current budget year. If things progress with the water park's development, the city is looking at financing the renovation for a seven-year period. The facility would be paid for through revenues in the capital improvement half-cent sales tax fund. Total capital improvements sales tax revenues for fiscal year 2012-13 are projected at $2,030,226, including a beginning balance of $1,219,817. At the end of the budget year, the remaining balance in this fund is expected to be $825,736.

Holland stated that the city wants the facility to be not only a nice water park for the community, but something that will be self-supporting and not use money from the general fund.

New Pool On Its Way
March 20, 2012

C-T Photo / Drew Van Dyke

Contractors interested in designing a new water park for Chillicothe were at the aquatic center today (Tuesday) to learn more about the city's plan for a major pool upgrade. Project specifics have yet to be determined; however, at this time, the city would like to see a plan that turns the pool into a theme park-like area, including such things as water slides, a lazy river, sprayground, zero-depth entry pool, water sports pool, water toys and play system, submerged seating and, possibly, diving boards. The design proposals are expected to include demolition of the existing pool facility, with the possible exception of the current showers and office area. Proposals are due by April 17. The city has allotted approximately $2 million for the project. City Administrator Ike Holland said that he would like for the project to commence with groundbreaking by Fall 2012, be finished by Spring 2013, and for the park to be open by the 2013 swimming season. Expansion of the area is possible to the north and east.

Major Renovation Planned for Pool
March 16, 2012, CT - Amanda McKay

The Chillicothe Aquatics Center currently includes a lap pool, two water slides, diving boards, a wade pool and a baby pool. The new plan would call for water slides, a lazy river, sprayground, zero-depth entry pool, water sports pool, water toys and play system, sunbathing area, sun shades, submerged seating, and possible diving boards. Preliminary work is being done for major renovations at Chillicothe's aquatic center and construction could start as early as this fall after the swimming pool closes for the season.

No definite timeline has been identified, but money is being earmarked in the city's 2012-13 budget to start on a project that is roughly estimated to cost around $2 million. The pool's last renovation was 20 years ago. The city has already issued a request for proposals for design services at the aquatic center and all parties interested in submitting proposals must attend a walk-through of the existing facility and an informational meeting with city officials next Tuesday.

Project specifics have yet to be determined, but Chillicothe Mayor Chuck Haney said the city will conduct public meetings to gather input about what features are desired for the renovated water park. The advertisement for design services states that the desired features should include water slides, a lazy river, sprayground, zero-depth entry pool, water sports pool, water toys and play system, sunbathing area, sun shades, submerged seating, and possibly diving boards. The request for proposals also states that a lap pool is not wanted. Proposals are due no later than April 17.

Total cost for the project has yet to be identified; however, the city plans to set aside $365,000 in the upcoming budget which is expected to be passed before March 30.

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