Ava's Splash Pad

Project Details

Location: Mt. Juliet, Tennessee, USA

Application: Community Park

Year of Installation: 2013

Main Features:

  • Zero-depth aquatic play pad
  • Play zones for toddlers, children and youth
  • Bright, happy colours and features that represent Ava's favourite things
  • Custom air-brushed graphics

Like most two-year-olds, Ava Bright absolutely loved water—she would splash in the pool, the lake, and even puddles in a parking lot. In March 2010, Ava passed away unexpectedly due to surgical complications. Following this tragic loss, her family founded the Avalyn Shaye Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization with a mission to enrich the lives of children and offer them the chance to experience the things Ava loved most.

It was the life and legacy of Ava that inspired the idea for a place for families to go and enjoy each other and make wonderful memories. Ava had spent many afternoons cooling off and splashing at an aquatic play pad in a nearby town, since Mt. Juliet didn't have this type of facility. The Avalyn Shaye Foundation set out to change that, raising money to bring an aquatic play pad to their community, and entering in the Make Way for Water Play Contest. 

The grand prize winner of the contest, Ava's Splash Pad opened in July of 2013. With custom air-brushed strawberry and blueberry graphics, monkey and bumblebee water cannons, rainbow arches and colourful dumping buckets, the play pad honours Ava, and continues to spread joy throughout her community. 

The Make Way for Water Play Contest celebrated 25 years of innovation for Waterplay, offering contestants the opportunity to win a discount of up to 25% towards Waterplay product. Finalists were selected based on the level of community impact, park design, and the stories behind the project. The selection of the grand prize winner was determined by a public vote.