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County Spraygrounds Now Open

by Katie Pyzyk May 29, 2012 at 9:40 am 4,114 55 Comments

Just in time for the arrival of hot weather, the county’s spraygrounds have opened.

The three parks — Drew Playground (3514 22nd Street S.), Hayes Park (1516 N. Lincoln Street) and Lyon Village Park (1800 N. Highland Street) — opened over the weekend and will remain in service until Labor Day weekend. Hours of operation can be found online.

A fourth sprayground was originally supposed to have opened already at Virginia Highlands Park, but now isn’t expected to be ready until next year.

  • Arthur Agin

    Unfortunately they don’t have a holiday schedule so they shutoff yesterday at 3:00. My daughter was disappointed since we had only arrived at 2:45. I suggest on holidays they use the Sunday times and stay running until 8:00.

    • Dry Ground

      On Sunday the Drew sprayground stopped working at 6:00, not 8:00 as advertised online.

      • Susan Kalish

        Hi, I’m Susan Kalish and I work for Arlington County Parks and Recreation. You are right…Drew was supposed to be open until 8:00pm. We are checking the timing system to see what happened. It was such a hot night! Sorry for the inconvience. We’ll do better…promise.

    • Susan Kalish

      Hi! I’m Susan Kalish and I work for Arlington County Parks and Recreation. You are right it would be a great idea for the spraygrounds to be open all day on holidays. Just checked and we can definitely do it for July 4. Thanks for helping us make the parks better.

  • Josh S

    Don’t forget to complain about how short the hours are.

    • GreaterClarendon

      If I recall correctly, they limited the hours of the water parks to save $20,000 per year in the budget. Since that and the library are about the only county services I use at this time- it is a bit frustrating they can spend millions on dog parks and hundreds of millions on street cars, but cut back on such a small part of the budget that means so much for the kids – I know, it’s a white person problem 🙂

      • drax

        Short-term vs. long-term. Economic development (and revenue enhancement) vs. non-development.

  • South Awwlington

    lol – I think the complaint about hours on a Holiday are totally legit. It’s safe top assume the target audience of a spray ground are school aged kids, kids aren’t in school on holidays…so why in the world would you not have the darn thing on?

    On another note, does anyone know if they recirculate the water in these? I can’t imagine not.

    • South Awwlington

      *to

    • MC 703

      I hope so. Clean water ain’t cheap and it isn’t as plentiful as most people would assume when turning on the faucet.

      • drax

        Except in a drought, we have plenty of water. But it’s not cheap. Wonder what the water bill is for these parks.

    • drax

      They do not recirculate the water.

      • South Awwlington

        I find this fact very odd as Arlington attempts to be very green.

        • drax

          It’s not that big a deal. The water goes back into the streams and into the Potomac, where it came from. It is a waste of energy from the purifying of the water though, and it’s obviously a concern in a drought. But water is renewable.

          • Arlington, Northside

            Would be great for the water to be caught in a cistern to be used later to irrigate the surrounding parks.

          • drax

            Sure.

          • jackson

            Would it hurt the plants if the water was 25% little kid pee?

          • Z

            Better than the 100% bro pee from drunken walks home at night from the bars…

    • Susan Kalish

      Hi, I’m Susan Kalish and I work for Arlington County’s Parks and Recreation. Currently, none of our Sprayparks recirculate the water. It’s a tricky process because to recirculate it we’d have to use the same chemicals that are used in pools. We are looking to try to develop a system to reuse the water in our next sprayground.

  • Corey

    Whatever happened to turning a sprinkler on in the front yard? Does the government really need to take care of everything for us, now?

    • Yards?

      You may have not noticed, but not everyone has a yard. There are these large buildings called apartments and condos. There are a few of them in Arlington

      • WeiQiang

        I’m willing to host a limited number of brahs in my front yard for sprinkler bonding.

      • Corey

        Yet another problem with what Arlington’s become. You choose to live in an apartment, you choose not to get stuff like sprinklers in your front yard. Simple as that.

        • Quoth the Raven

          So that means that the county should be precluded from installing them?

          • Z

            Should we all pay for them? I don’t think so. These are places that can ONLY be used during warm weather, unlike a playground which can be used all year. They’re resource-intensive, and require ongoing maintenance as opposed to again, a playground, which is pretty much build it and leave it for 10 years. People are just arguing that it’s a very wasteful thing to have tax dollars going toward. It’s an entitlement issue with saying that folks in apartments *deserve* to have a sprinkler to play in — they don’t.

          • Quoth the Raven

            I wasn’t saying anyone did or did not “deserve” these things. The county has chosen to spend money this way, as they choose to spend money is all sorts of ways. Not every project is going to be for all people – some things are for adults, some things are for kids, etc. I’m sure we could all point to plenty of projects that, for whatever reason, we do or do not agree with. That doesn’t mean that they’re wrong or that the county shouldn’t do it. In other words, what makes spraygrounds different from any other project?

          • Arlington, Northside

            We live in a single family house, and our kids use the spraygrounds through out the summer. It is a nice distraction for them and even as a Republican see them as improveing the lives of all. Just as Teddy R. gave us the National Parks for of natural beauty and recreation, here we have a little bit of urban recreation and the beauty of happy kids. The burden on the tax coffers is minimal and I don’t see an attractive way of commercializing such things in our neighborhoods in order to remove the tax burden. This is not the Artsphere.

          • John Muir

            Amazing pivot and score, dude. TR was the last great Republican prez, precisely because of the Nat Parks.

            Given the bond issues for park improvements, I ‘m not sure the minimal tax burden arguement holds.

          • Corey

            Ah, so wasteful tax expenditures are OK when they benefit you. Got it.

          • Arlington, Northside

            Ike, Ford, Reagan, George HW Bush, all great Republican Presidents in their own way.

            We have far bigger funding siphons than the spray parks. Just look at the gigantic sports complex at the end of Crystal City, costing a fortune to build and will cost far more to maintain that grass and landscaping, let alone the Monday morning trash clean ups, than it will cost for water coming out of the spraygrounds. And last weekend the parking around it was filled with Maryland Tags sporting central and south american national stickers. Now I am not knocking our immigrants at all here, just pointing out they are hard workers who are not likly to spend their earning at our high end Crystal City dining establishments.

            The sprayparks are for the people who live and pay taxes here, they help continue to make Arlington enjoyable. Of the things that we spend money on in the county, it is hard to chaulk them up as a waste like you can with the Artsphere.

          • WeiQiang

            If you think that the VA Highlands Park “Spraycation Station” isn’t going to provide hours of wet, wonderous joy for kids from within and without Arlington, I think you misunderestimate the diversity of the park’s user base. Currently, the tennis courts, futbol field, basketball courts, and softball fields are all amply used by people with tags from other jurisdictions. The water feature will be, as well.

            As for usage of Long Bridge Park, I’m not sure whether you were referring to the DC United players that practice there or the Marymount players that may have out-of-state tags. If you mean someone else, rest assured that ArlCo residents/leagues have the ability to reserve the faclities if they like. I do know that the hardworking immigrants who maintain buildings and staff restaurants here in Crys City use the field off hours AND they patronize Arlington business.

            I’m not sure which part of “public accomodation” you’re objecting to.

          • Arlington, Northside

            The soccer fields were field with recreation league folks, not Marymount or DC United Players, on Saturday and Sunday and there were not many Virginia plates in the parking areas.

        • speonjosh

          I choose to live in Arlington – I shouldn’t be able to use publicly built and paid for roads to visit the beach?

        • RK

          So I chose not to have a swing set or slide in my yard. Therefore we should do away with all playgrounds? What a bizarre argument.

        • drax

          Corey has gotten too good at spoofing the idiotic comments on ArlNow.

          • RK

            Dang, fell for it. Well played Corey.

          • Josh S

            Yeah, I forgot his approach, too. Hate when that happens….

    • South Awwlington

      Prepare the cannons: I guess you have to pick which is more important, living close in and without a yard versus living out in the burbs and a huge yard.

      I think this is a cool idea, for sure and would have loved it as a kid.

      If the reason for building these is to give condo kids a yard, I’d say wrong answer.

      • old man

        In my day, we opened up the fire hydrants and jumped around in the street!

        • ArlLiving

          We jumped uphill in those days — on the way up, and again on the way down. Uphill, both ways!

      • Junk Smith

        I wonder how long it will be before someone is taking a shower in one

        • Josh S

          Well, they’ve been in existence for several years now, and I can’t remember hearing about that having happened…..

  • sunflower

    not to “rain” on anyone’s parade, but here’s another reason to be vigilant. http://www.cdc.gov/media/pressrel/2008/r080519.htm

    • drax

      Not a problem in spraygrounds, since the water doesn’t recirculate.

      • sunflower

        were you aware of this? it was a few years back, but it was crypto in the storage tank . crypto is impervious to chlorine. no recirculation as far as i know.

        http://wxxinews.org/post/lawsuit-filed-sprayground-illnesses

        • sunflower

          you may be right–if there’s no recirculation a storage tank would not be needed

        • drax

          Interesting, thanks.

  • the all-bro ‘sprayground’ outside of carpool in ballston is open year-round, FYI.

    • WeiQiang

      Do they recirculate the Drakar Noir or the Axe that previously ran in to the drains?

      • speonjosh

        Drakar Noir is still available?

        • hell yeah it is, bro.

          *sprays cologne all over new polo shirt, puts on aviator sunglasses & heads over to the sprayground*

          • nom de guerre

            Hey brah, don’t forget to pop your collar.

  • I work for the company that manufactured the features for the Splashpad pictured (Vortex). We are proud to have been part of the project and this Splashpad looks fantastic!

    If you would like to learn more about Vortex and find installations in your area, please visit http://www.vortex-intl.com and contact us.

    Vortex is the world leader in Aquatic Play Solutions with over 4,500 installations worldwide!

    • Quoth the Raven

      Good – so you can answer the question of whether Drakar Noir will flow properly through the system.

  • Spray grounds in water parks is a brilliant idea. Kids love to play in spray grounds during summer.

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