Park and Rec Upgrade Idea Gets 66 % Support
Voters in Shawano gave the go-ahead to the common council that asked voters whether or not the city should borrow up to $1.85 million in general obligation debt to complete the construction to Franklin and Smalley Park, as well as the installation of a Splash Pad. Shawano Park and Rec Director Matt Hendricks said even he was surprised at the margin of approval.
“I think it shows that there’s definitely excitement and desire to really pursue some of these projects, which is what we were looking for. It’s not a binding referendum, so that doesn’t mean it’s a done deal. It will go before city council and those folks to make the final decision.”
If the council were to move forward officially with the park and rec referendum, Hendricks argues the move could boost the quality of life in the city, and while that is determined more than just the quality of parks, these parks will add a diverse number of attractions they have to offer.
“What we talk a lot about in our department is every park doesn’t need to be everything to every person, but hopefully there’s a piece of our park system that people can relate to” explained Hendricks. “For example, I might not be a big baseball player, so the baseball diamonds may not mean a whole lot to me, but if I’m an avid trail walker, I might love the trails at Kuckuk Park.”
While nothing will be official until the council acts on the referendum, Hendricks said he believes members of council vote as directed by the voters of the city.