New facilities make splash at Red Bay Fun Park
It sometimes seems it’s more common for construction projects to finish late than on time – but that wasn’t the case in Red Bay, where a targeted 100-day construction project wrapped up with a month to spare. The city officially opened the doors on its new pool house facilities Friday with a celebratory ribbon cutting at Red Bay Fun Park.
Mayor Charlene Fancher thanked the Red Bay City Council for approving the construction and credited the council of eight years ago for refinancing debt that created a pool of capital improvement funds.
“What better way to spend this money than on this facility right here? It’s all for the children,” Fancher said. “Words cannot describe. This is the result of good decisions eight years ago. With that good budgeting, we are able to provide a good facility that is going to last another 40-plus years for the children and citizens of Red Bay.” The new facility held special meaning for the mayor, whose first job with the city was as a lifeguard at the Fun Park.
She also praised Parks and Recreation Director Dean Hubbard.
“He has run tirelessly to get this facility open,” Fancher said. “We do not pay him enough. He works night and day.”
Hubbard echoed Fancher’s sentiments, of all the hard work being to benefit the children.
“The pride part of it for me is to see the kids. I love kids, and I love to see them – when they smile when they come in and see what we’ve got, that’s what I like,” Hubbard said.
The old building was torn down Feb. 6, and construction bid for the project was awarded to Burton Construction out of Golden, Miss., at $240K.
The new pool house features handicap-accessible restrooms. As part of the reconstruction, extensive sewage and plumbing problems were addressed. “We had a lot of problems with the drainage because we could not get to it. It was all under concrete,” said Hubbard in a previous interview. “Everything in it was old – just, absolutely old.” Access to the bathrooms is now be available from the farmers market and playground.
In addition to the improved restroom facilities, the pool house is large enough to accommodate the entry fee window and the concession stand under one roof, enabling the department to consolidate personnel for those two functions and providing much-improved accommodations for these city employees. Storage space will house rental chairs and the pool’s handicap-accessible lift, along with other needed supplies.