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Riverwild Grand Opening
The Grand Opening of
In Delano Park
On Monday, May 9, 2011 the laughter and song of children were heard as they marched down Prospect Drive from Somerville Road Elementary and Decatur High Developmental Schools. The cheerleaders and student volunteers of Decatur Heritage Christian Academy led the parade with pompoms, cheers, and hundreds of bright balloons. It was a special day! The children were about to enter the new Riverwild Garden built just for them and for all the children and families of North Alabama. As they entered the Great Tennessee River Pathway and saw Captain Mike Mallard and the Tree Lady, there were many smiles, hugs, and high fives. Passing through the Margaret Vann Entry Gateway, all were filled with joy and anticipation of a time planned just for them. As the children, City officials, Friends of Delano Park, and the community gathered in the Fish School Terrace, the Decatur Heritage band played triumphantly in the historic bandstand thrilling the hearts of everyone present.
Pat Woller, who first advocated the need for the Splashpad in Delano Park, spoke of the many years of hard workinvolved in building the three phases of Riverwild. She then introduced Senator Arthur Orr who told everyone the history of the Great Tennessee River and reminded us of the good that can be done when people do not care who gets the credit. It was then time for fun, and the Decatur Heritage students led the others in blowing bubbles, face painting, crafts, learning cheers, and enjoying the playground. As the music played on, everyone present knew something very special had happened that day that they would never forget. It was truly children caring for children and a great day for Decatur, Alabama.