Thursday, May 31, 2012

The Bay Opens with a Splash

By Paul Thompson • JC Advocate
South Kansas City made waves last Friday when ‘The Bay’ water-park was finally introduced to the public.

The sparkling new $7.5 million public water park, located at the Longview Tract off Blue Ridge Blvd., held its soft opening last weekend with great fanfare and a large swell of community patronage.

For area proponents, it was a triumphant moment more than a decade in the making. South Kansas City had been deprived of a public water facility since the closing of the YMCA (at the same location) more than a decade ago. 

The park is packed with amenities, including a lazy river, two tube slides, a swirl bowl slide, a six-lane lap pool, a zero-depth entry pool, and honestly, a whole lot more. 

“Working folks deserve public services as much as anyone else,” said Kansas City Councilman John Sharp said at the event, in a moment of introspection.  “I think this is the most significant thing I’ve done since I’ve been in public office. But I couldn’t have done it without a wealth of community support.”

Councilwoman Cindy Circo praised the tireless efforts of Councilman Sharp to ensure that the revitalization of the Longview Tract was successful in its transition from dream to reality. 

“On behalf of our mayor, we’re very proud to help you celebrate this new community asset,” said Circo to those gathered in attendance. “I truly want to thank Councilman Sharp. His advocacy for the Southland has been undaunted.”

Several others spoke in swift speeches before an official ribbon cutting was held, as the dignitaries in attendance preferred to allow the park itself to serve as the main spectacle of the evening.

The Longview Tract has been undergoing a makeover for years now, and the location already boasted a popular spray-ground, as well as basketball courts and refurbished football fields that host hundreds of children for organized weekend games.

But the area is poised to be an even greater attraction now that it boasts an anchor tenant as impressive as The Bay. Sharp, for one, believes that the water-park can help lure businesses to the surrounding area. He listed the need to find a replacement grocery store in the old Apple Market building (off Longview Road and Blue Ridge) as a primary goal now that The Bay has been completed.

 “This is the jewel of the development right here,” said Sharp, gesturing behind him toward the water-park. “This was something that was community-driven and community-led. This is the beginning of the rejuvenation of the Ruskin/Hickman Mills area.”

The Bay is open from noon until 8pm Monday through Friday, and 11am until 8pm on Saturday and Sunday. The cost of admission is $6 for youth (under 48 inches) and senior (over 65 years of age), and $9 for the regular rate. Admission is free for any child under a year old. Check the park’s website at for any further questions.

1 comment:

  1. I wish there was a "Family" Season Pass option that would save families money. Many other pools in the Greater Kansas City area have this option, I believe.