August Park Update
Behind the scenes with Bill Tinsley, CEO
Miles of underground utilities are being installed on-site, but none that will have a more direct impact on the environment than the drainage separator that will capture the first half-inch of rainfall from the offsite roadway systems. This water travels on property through the FDOT drainage system and conveys debris and high nutrients to a 300-acre basin off-site.
This system will capture the solids in the cage and release water through a filtration system into the wetland ponds for further nutrient removal. At the end of the project, this same water that will be contained in the 6.5-acre Blanton Lagoon will be used to irrigate the gardens. Although the majority of the work underway at this time will be hidden from the public, the intentional design of the infrastructure and utilities by Sasaki is done with the sustainability of the Park and our environment as the core.
Progress at the Maintenance Building continues as drywall is shaping the final spaces and electric and mechanical work continues. We look forward to completion of this first structure, as it will accommodate our sad but necessary move from the Depot (our current headquarters) as it becomes the right-hand turn lane to Bonnet Springs Park from George Jenkins Boulevard. Amid the construction challenges, we are continuing to see an abundance of wildlife that speaks to the Urban Oasis that will be our future at Bonnet Springs Park.
Bonnet Springs Park Welcomes Incoming CEO Josh Henderson
New life is blooming at Lakeland’s ambitious Park project as the Bonnet Springs Park Board of Directors announced the appointment of Josh Henderson as incoming Chief Executive Officer. Bonnet Springs Park Board Chairman Barney Barnett said “We are happy to have Josh join us as CEO. Josh and Bill Tinsley will work in collaboration with our outstanding team as we move forward in building this great Park.”
Josh imbues a breadth of experiences from his catalog of natural and aquatic recreation facilities, including Six Flags-Whitewater in Atlanta and the beloved Silver Springs in Ocala. Josh returns to the sunshine state after the tremendous success opening Gathering Place, a 66-acre riverfront park in Tulsa, Oklahoma which welcomed over 3 million guests in its opening year. “The entire BSP team is thrilled to find someone with Josh’s leadership skills. His broad experience and team building skills will ensure the success of this world class park Josh fell in love with.” said Bonnet Springs Park, CEO Bill Tinsley. Great cities deserve great parks, and with his passion for providing world-class recreational experiences, Josh will lead the vision for Bonnet Springs Park, and help cultivate the great Park Central Florida deserves.
Bonnet Springs Park looks forward to welcoming Josh and his wife, Meredith, with their two sons, Kyle (9) and Caleb (7) to Lakeland, Florida in August as they embark on a new journey and relocate from Tulsa, Oklahoma. When Josh is not working, he has several hobbies and spends as much time with his family as possible. Josh is an avid car enthusiast, enjoys coaching soccer and football for his boys, visiting the Orlando theme parks, and going to the beach. Josh’s goal is to continue providing world-class recreational experiences in Central Florida while leading the charge to the Grand Opening at Bonnet Springs Park in 2021.
To read the full press release and learn more, visit our website.
Harrell Family Sensory Garden Sound Sculpture Delivered
The Platform Art Sound Sculpture that will be housed in the Harrell Family Sensory Garden was delivered and installed by Rodda Construction this week! The design was dreamed up by All Saints Academy NuVu Innovation Studio students, Laura Prazdnicane and Jiayun “Lucy” Zhnag. The Sound Sculpture replicates the shape of a treble clef music symbol and is constructed of stainless steel and enhanced with landscaped vegetation that will become part of the total image. Also included within the sculpture are interactive elements that mimic the sound of rain. Stay tuned for our unveiling announcement!
Vice Chair Board Member & Major Donor Jack Harrell Inducted to the Tampa Bay Business Hall of Fame
This year, the Florida Council on Economic Education is hosting the 33rd Annual Tampa Bay Business Hall of Fame. While the celebratory event is now pushed to the Spring of 2021, we’re still finding our own way to celebrate as our very own Vice Chair board member and major donor, Jack Harrell, Jr. is being inducted! This year’s celebration focuses on the Class of 2020 and all Tampa Bay Hall of Fame members who are seen as “Visionaries” in their fields.
Jack is certainly a visionary in his field, contributing to the future Harrell Family Botanical Gardens that will serve as an element that educates and engages the community through the 5 senses. Congratulations, Jack! We’re so honored and proud to have you as an integral member of Bonnet Springs Park.
To learn more about the 33rd Annual Tampa Bay Business Hall of Fame, visit their website.
Won’t You Be Our Friend?
July 30th, we celebrated International Friendship Day! This international holiday places emphasis on the idea that friendship between peoples, countries, cultures and individuals can build bridges between communities. Friends of Bonnet Springs Park aims to do just that! Won’t you be our friend? Friends of Bonnet Springs Park exists to champion our region’s newest park. We are currently focused on education and advocacy to spread the word about Bonnet Springs Park and how it will transform our community for generations to come. To learn more and become our friend, visit our website!
Leave Your Mark on the Park!
Wondering how you can leave your mark on the park? We’ve got you covered! Visit our site to learn more about sponsoring engraved bricks and benches.
Celebrating 3,000 Supporters!
It’s crazy to think that we’ve officially hit 3,000 likes on Bonnet Springs Park Facebook! In a short amount of time, 3,000 (and even more outside of social media) of you have supported the mission of Bonnet Springs Park, advocated for its creation, and truly warmed our hearts with your excitement on so many of our posts. To say we’re grateful would be an understatement. Thank you for believing in this park and truly championing our vision that will benefit future generations in our community. Each of you are truly the heart and soul of Bonnet Springs Park.