Wibaux Park could become a watery wonderland for kids

Abe Winter
Star Staff Writer

Miles City officials are hoping Wibaux Park will get a facelift in the form of a $750,000 splash pad and slide tower with several features that will be enjoyed by children.

It’s a project of Milestown Community Improvement, Inc. (MCII), a non-profit organization that relies on donations, gifts and the sale of license plates for its funding.

So far, $300,000 is banked and drawing interest for the splash pad, which would feature ground sprays, water guns and other warm-weather attractions.

The proposal is a work in progress, and has the blessing of the Miles City Council.

“I’ve been passionately working on this the past two years,” said John Goff, vice president of MCII. 

“I think it’s a wonderful idea,” Mayor John Hollowell said during discussion of the project at Tuesday’s City Council meeting.

“I think it’s going to be a benefit to our community,” Council Member Susanne Galbraith added.

Goff displayed photos of the splash pad. He told the Council that $35,000 has been invested in engineering and the project would have a 4,000-gallon holding tank for water underground.

Provisions for extra parking at the 7.3 acre park, which is located near Miles Community College, park are already in progress, according to Scott Gray, the city’s public works director.

“It’s amazing,” Hollowell said after the meeting was adjourned. “It’s community helping community. What else can you ask for?”

Goff said the project’s completion “is one, perhaps two years away, depending on donations.”

At about 8,450 square feet, the new pad will be bigger than the neighboring frog pond children’s wading pool. It will be built in an oblong circle and will feature 10 ground features — pop-it, tulip, confetti spray, Charlotte’s Web, tappin’ tune (piano keys similar to what a young Tom Hanks played on in the movie “Big”), puddle, moptop, two cannons (water guns), gusher, activity tower (sprays, water buckets and  slides — one each for smaller children and bigger children).

It will have activator switches, so when not being used it will shut down until a user hits a button to turn it on.

The splash pad would add to a list of amenities at Wibaux that already include a playground, the wading pool, a basketball court, a picnic shelter, restrooms and a fountain.

Brandon Janshen is president of MCII. He is joined by Goff, secretary Dan Rice, treasurer Joe Menyart and board members Neil Wallette, Chad Ridenour, Josh Sloan, Blayne Watts, Barrie Matthews, Marc Ingraham and Jeni Mahan.

“The whole MCII group has been helping with it,” Goff said, adding that it would be built between the Frog Pool and the Wibaux Park shelter.

To donate to the splash pad fund contact any MCII member. Janshen can be reached at Stevenson Design at 406-853-2824 or Goff at Quad K Supply at 406-853-2191.

(Contact Abe Winter at starcity@midrivers.com or 406-234-0450.)