Wasatch High School Students Plan To Bring Splashpad/Ice Rink To Heber’s Main Street

Wasatch High School Center for Advance Professional Studies students are working alongside Heber’s Community Alliance for Main Street to bring a dual purpose splashpad/ice rink to Heber’s Main Street.

Wasatch CAPS student Nathan Larson says that the original idea for the splash pad came from a presentation made to city council by Roger Brooks an expert on tourism branding, and downtown development.

“We have many different sources,” Larson continued. “Including our own personal research which we split up and then we shared and collaborated with each other. We had many meetings with the city manager, the mayor, the park manager we all got their input on what they want.”

Fellow CAPS student Ian Mayne says that the group has landed on a location for the splashpad/ice rink.

“Looking at how many businesses are around Town Hall Square or some of the other locations we looked at, like the City Park that’s there, or in front of police station some other places. We found that Town Hall Square would be the best,” Mayne explained. “That’s where the most local businesses are. Really we want to help the economy as much as we want to help people to have a place to come (to) in downtown Heber.”

CAPS students and those assisting them have estimated the project will cost $100,000 and are currently seeking funds through private benefactors. Mayne says that the installation of the splashpad/ice rink should be fairly simple.

“Really all you need to do is buy some rubber mats to put down on the grass,” Mayne said. “Then with our design we have right now we have the sidewalk that goes around where the ice rink will be and then just putting synthetic ice over the top of that which is a pretty straightforward process. Some of the people in CAPS, actually the students know how to do that because they’ve had experience with that. We’re hoping that this will be starting construction in May and then probably this next winter there would be an ice rink there.”

The proposed fenced-in, oval shaped splashpad would have cement steps along the outside for people to sit on and watch their children. The design would contain the city’s logo and be outlined with eight images showcasing outdoor sports in the Heber Valley. CAPS student Chandler Lake connects the children’s play area with the much larger “Our Outdoor Sports Destination” theme.

“Yeah and you think about a little child who looks around the edges of the splash pad right? Which have like all the different sports in the logos,” Lake continued. “They’re just going to grow up in their childhood seeing that the Heber city logos and associate those sports, those various outdoor activities with Heber city.”

Mayne says the project is the just first step for the shared vision.

“So yes, the splashpad itself is probably more for toddlers,” Mayne explained. “But, if we can create this whole block to a place that people want to be, if we have food trucks there, or if we have a live band on the stage that we hope eventually will be there, it’s going to bring out young adults. It’s going to bring out teenagers, it’s going to bring out toddlers and kids for the splash pad and then the older people as well too. So really, we’re trying to create an environment that is for everybody.”

You can also read more about Wasatch CAPS efforts to create a cohesive vision for Heber here.

Read the original story at KPCW.org.

Heber Valley Artisan Cheese held their 2nd annual Ice Sculptures Exhibition this weekend. Several local businesses sponsored the sculptures being displayed. There were also two different ice carving demonstrations. The event was free to the public.

The annual event began last year when Carolee Kohler saw ice sculpting on a Hallmark movie and thought it would be a fun idea for their farm. They are also considering a woodcarving event.

According to Lindsey Strother, social media and events coordinator, each sculpture takes between 1-3 hours to carve. “We contacted Amazing Ice Creations back in November, and we reached out to local companies to sponsor the ice sculptures,” she said. “Yesterday morning around 9 am, they came in a massive truck and dropped them all off for us, and we set them up.”

Along with the ice sculptures, sponsors receive a sign and canopy for the display and social media marketing. The sponsors decide what they want to have sculpted. After the event, they can take the ice sculptures and display them at their businesses. The creations normally last a couple of weeks. Some will be left in the field and can be viewed throughout the week.

The ice this year included Olaf, company logos, animals, and other items. Darron Kingston, the sculptor, has carved ice for over 10 years with his dad. According to Kingston, “I like sculptures that give me a challenge. Here, for example, my favorite was the lumberjack.” One of his favorite past creations was a 9-foot bear.

Grant Kohler, owner of Heber Valley Artisan Cheese, explained, “We decided to do something that was free and something that people could just get out and come and enjoy. Especially this year with Covid, it seems like Januarys are slow months. People are looking for things to be able to get outside and do.” He continued, “Businesses pay in and buy the sculptures, we have them sculpted, and then we just let people come and enjoy them.” Kohler estimated around 3,000 to 4,000 people will stop by the event.

The dairy farm also offers cheese-making classes and tours of their new robotic barn. “The tours are everyday except Sunday,” according to Kohler. “People hayride over, intermingle with the cows, see the barn and amenities, and watch the cows be milked. The cows will literally go get milked on their own.” Tickets for the tours and other events are available on the Heber Valley Artisan Cheese website: https://hebervalleyartisancheese.com/.