Kacie Jane Park in Springboro is nearing completion. STAFF/LAWRENCE BUDD
Photo: Lawrence Budd
Photo: Lawrence Budd

Area giant splash pad playground ready to open when state allows

“A few years ago I came across a picture of my two daughters, Ali and Kacie, playing in a fountain when they were younger. They were so happy and carefree, laughing and playing in the water,” Lori Hausfeld said.

“That was when I realized I wanted to help build a splash pad in Springboro. Somewhere kids could go to laugh and have fun. The statue reminds me of that day years ago…my two daughters laughing and playing in the water.”

Children will soon be splashing again in the park named for Kacie Hausfeld, who died along with her father, Tom, in a April 1, 2010 plane crash just after their take-off from the Dayton-Wright Brothers Airport.

“Watching the park progress over the last two years has been very exciting for our family. To see a place where so many families and children can enjoy and create memories for years to come is amazing,” Lori Hausfeld, Kacie’s mother and Tom’s widow, added in an email. “We also wanted to give back to the community of Springboro. Their love and support after the accident was incredible and we are forever grateful for it.”

RELATED: Family donating $1M for Springboro-Cleacreek park

In appreciation, members of the Hausfeld family are donating a total of $1 million over five years toward the park. The city and Clearcreek Twp. governments are pitching in to cover other costs of the park at the southwest corner of Crossley and Lytle-Five Points roads, in Clearcreek Township.

The splash pad opened last year.

The $700,000 second phase includes three playground areas: one traditional playground for children 2-5 years old, one for those 5-12 years old and a playground area with interactive games and “musical instruments,” according to City Manager Chris Pozzuto.

While work is to be completed soon, Pozzuto said the parks will open depending upon state guidance on how to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus.

“We are hoping that the entire park (including splash pad) can be open sometime this summer, but of course we are waiting for additional guidance from the state,” Pozzuto said in an email.

Last week, Lori Hausfeld expressed excitement about the opening.

” I have had a lot of people asking me when it will be complete. Hopefully soon!” she said in an email.

“I think of Kacie every time I drive by the park. I know her carefree spirit is there. She would have loved it. I hope she’s proud of what we have done”.

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