Entries Tagged 'Sioux Falls Parks and Rec' ↓

I guess the only people living in McKennan Park are a Planning Commission members family and the mayor’s daughter

Besides this video looking like a trailer for a Hallmark Hall of Fame movie, I wondered why there wasn’t more interviews with people who were actually using the park for a gathering instead of the mayor’s friends and family.

The ‘Wall of Lies’

Midco Exec thinks we voted on an Indoor Pool


It amazes me that an executive from the company that is sponsoring the project is still peddling the lie that we ‘voted on this’. He said this during the grand opening ceremony (FF: 9:20);

“I’m going to guess in not to long of a period of time from now, after the community has had the opportunity to visit and take advantage of this fabulous facility, it’s gonna be darn near impossible to find anyone in Sioux Falls to admit they voted no. And if they do, just shake your head and just say, every once in awhile nobody is perfect we all make mistakes.”

The mayor even goes on to say that ‘22,193 citizens who voted . . . to support our new indoor pool’ (19:20).

Yeah, I’m shaking my head that you would make the mistake of blurting out a lie. He knows better. Even after the falsehoods sold to us in the advocational sessions and election campaign leading up to the project, the players in this cheating game can’t resist to get in one last dig and lie about the pool.

One person chose to build the indoor pool. Mike Huether. There was no vote (on an indoor pool) and it wasn’t entirely paid for with cash. You would think, that with the pool already built, they could finally start telling the truth. I guess not. You won, why continue to lie?

Cry me a Pool of tears

Looks more like the Flailing Duck instead of the Cannonball


I don’t know about you, but when I go to the pool, I don’t swim in my t-shirt.

Indoor aquatic center ‘Wall of Lies’


I think Cameraman Bruce and I figured out why we were not invited as media to see the indoor pool before the public. They didn’t want us to see the ‘Wall of Lies’. I just hope taxpayers didn’t pay for this piece of propaganda.

Besides the fact that this hasn’t been discussed for 60 years, there are many claims on this mural that don’t add up. The first one (which I didn’t take a picture of) is that Nelson Park (Drake Springs) would have been the home of the first indoor pool (if that darn Theresa Stehly didn’t get involved) her name wasn’t mentioned on the article, but it was clear who they were trying to throw under the bus. The outdoor pool passed at that location of an almost 2/1 vote. Though Stehly didn’t know it at the time, it would have actually been a poor location for an indoor pool. An aquatic consultant later told the city that because of ground water issues at Nelson Park, building an indoor pool at that location would have caused major maintenance concerns. In hindsight, we should be thanking Stehly.


The only one recommending the Spellerberg site was the mayor. The voters had no part in that decision. As for the convenient parking, you should have seen the zoo with traffic that was backed up both directions for at least a half a mile on Western Avenue tonight. Where will all these people park when there is a swim meet? Good question. I have often argued that the city should have partnered with Sanford at the Sports Complex for an indoor pool. Plenty of parking and room for expansion. We are literally land locked at Spellerberg, and with the expansion of the VA, expect parking issues for years to come. Eventually the city will have to take out more green space at the park to build a bigger parking lot.


Now let’s move on to the ‘advocational sessions’ and the pack of lies surrounding the outdoor pool vote. The public NEVER voted for an indoor pool, they simply rejected an outdoor pool, as I said, in a campaign paid for by taxpayers that had so many half truths in it, I wouldn’t even know where to begin. But I take issue with the crafty language the city used with the funding, ‘. . . which included no additional City debt,’. While that statement in itself is true, we basically turned a loan over for the levee bonds. When the Feds repaid us for that loan, instead of using the money to pay it off or using it for infrastructure, we turned the debt over to the pool. We still have to pay off those bonds, so this is essentially a white lie. There is still approximately $13 million of unpaid debt.

And lastly, the mayor couldn’t resist to get his name on wall in the building with one of his silly quotes;


And the $1.5 million dollar a year subsidy we have to pay to run this place will warm everyone’s heart.

As I mentioned above, a better option would have been partnering with Sanford or even the school district on this project. If anything, the aquatic center is a failure of prudent vision in acquiring such a facility, and we will all be paying for that mistake for years to come.

What do you think of a public property smoking ban?

Once again, department heads are ‘playing god’ and proposing ordinances without the input of the city’s legislative branch, the city council. Instead they put together some pretty presentations and try to push it through.

Presentation Doc: smoking-pres

Ordinance Doc: smoking-ord

I’m kind of on the fence on this one. While I supported the smoking ban in bars due to the health of workers, I question making a ‘legal product’ OUTSIDE in public spaces illegal or even enforceable. No question smoking kills more people in America then anything. I have often wondered then ‘Why not just make tobacco products illegal all together?’ instead of piddling with more laws limiting a legal product.

While we will hear several arguments about not being allowed to smoke outside the EC and in public parks, the big kicker will be at downtown patios. Businesses currently buy a special permit to have those patios, it is city property (public property). From what I can tell two downtown business owners allow smoking on their patios, Stogeez and Lucky’s. While Lucky’s doesn’t have a special state permit to allow smoking inside their establishment, Stogeez does. But will they be allowed to use that special permit to allow smoking on their patio that is city owned public property?

City Property. All property owned, leased, or operated by the city, including but not limited to all city parks; city golf courses; city buildings; any ticket, boarding, and waiting areas of any public transit depots; public parking strip; and any public sidewalks abutting any city property.

Section 3. That the Code of Ordinances of Sioux Falls, SD, are hereby amended by adding a section to be numbered 92.211 to read:

§ 92.211 Prohibited Conduct.

That the use of tobacco products and electronic smoking devices is hereby prohibited on any city property.

I’m sure we will be hearing from Stogeez owner, Tim Kant on this one.

Is the Indoor Aquatic Center having trouble finding workers?

The pool is going to open in October, but I found the hours of operation a bit strange?

• Monday through Friday, 5:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.
• Saturday, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.
• Sunday, 12 noon to 5 p.m.

While the weekdays seem like good hours, why the shortened hours on the weekends? You would think you would want extended hours on the weekend when working families and school kids could use the place?

Some would argue this is cost savings measure, but you have to heat and cool the building and water 24/7 anyway, and I would also assume the lights would be on to, so really it is just labor they are saving on.

Is the facility having trouble finding employees? Or, are the swim teams going to get special hours to use the facility? A question worth asking.

Letter author only proved how little they know about city government

I have often been baffled why so many people are concerned about the presidential election but don’t give two rips about their local government, you know, the people who determine what you pay in over half of your taxes. Just trust them, they say;

We have a progressive city leadership, and I feel they have led proudly through their many achievements.

Don’t compare the success of Downtown, the Events Center and an indoor pool to a $25 million dollar city administration that will be mostly empty and unfinished on day one. That’s not progress, that’s fiscal stupidity. The city would save millions over the next 20-30 years by leasing space. There is NOTHING in city charter that requires the city to OWN the buildings they house workers in. Especially pencil pushers.

(If) We wait another five to six years and decide to build with an increased cost of $8 million to $10 million more?

Yeah, that’s that thing called ‘inflation’ funny how it works. Maybe I should buy a case of candy bars now and freeze them, cause you know, candy bar prices are going up. The problem with his argument is that we don’t need the building today, and we won’t need it 6 years from now. As I have argued, as technology increases, the city should be able to reduce the number of administration workers, or better yet, start a home based worker program, we would save millions and it would boost morale. Let’s truly embrace a REAL progressive idea.

I trust our mayor and elected officials to lead us where we need to go. This city is flourishing.

He is right, the city is flourishing, and it all happened without a new administration building. How did city workers get so much accomplished with stagnant wage increases (while their managers were receiving corporate management style raises) and cramped space? I have often argued that if this building was really needed, we would have built it with cash and reserves before the EC or Indoor Pool. It was an after thought of the mayor, not a progressive idea at all.

There are those poor losers from previous elections that are choosing to make all things at City Hall political.

What part of elected ‘politician’ don’t you understand? Government is NOT business, and vice versa. ANY business our city government does is POLITICAL, whether they are approving a one-day wine license or a $25 million dollar administration building.

I tire of the Kermit Staggers clones that continue to throw cold water rather than seize the moment for numerous advances and the needed update to municipal offices and space. I fear our new council members will be nothing but a drag on continuing progress for Sioux Falls.

Yeah, those darn Staggers followers who got elected in the past election, and their horrible non-progressive ideas like snow gates, gardens in the boulevard and hopefully the elimination of charging for Project Trim. How dare they push these ideas off on us and drag us down by making the city be more customer service oriented, transparent and accountable to the people that fund them. What on God’s green earth are they thinking?

If voters were truly upset by City Council plans, there would be an uprising.

Yeah, because 6,400 signatures in 3 weeks is hardly an uprising.

Pathetic voter turnout is not an encouraging way to promote change; it suggests to me that most voters are complacent but satisfied with this status quo progressive city.

I wish more people would vote, but it seems our town is full of complacency, we do agree on that. But to say they are satisfied, may be a stretch. It’s an education curve, we try hard to get people involved with local government, but every time we do something, we have to hear from letter writers like you who say we are ‘interfering’. The mayor and the city council don’t own our government, WE DO, involvement should be encouraged not scolded.

Nelson Park at 10th Street and Cliff Avenue is the home of a relatively nice outdoor pool complex. Ever notice how much green space is basically wasted on the corner.

We do notice, the complex was supposed to be larger, but it seems some peeps with sour grapes over losing the election cut back on the size of the complex, which is ironic, because Drake Springs is the most popular pool in the city.

Ever wonder how much the city would have saved on the city’s new aquatic center if it had been built eight to 10 years ago on this corner?

We would be spending millions a year on maintenance if we would have built it there. Our aquatic consultant has said in their report that Nelson Park would have been a poor location for an indoor pool due to significant ground water issues that have existed for a 100 years. Besides, voters rejected an indoor pool at that location TWICE.

How bad is the traffic on busy Western Avenue going to congest across the street from a shopping center?

Maybe you should ask our ‘progressive’ and ‘visionary’ mayor and 3 city councilors why Spellerberg was chosen, when the wisest place would have been at the Sanford Sports Complex, with plenty of parking, room for expansion, and a possible partnership with Sanford that would have saved us millions.

The mayor and Councilor Erpenbach should stick to their principles.

Because fiscal stupidity and ignorance should never stand in the way of progress. Go Team!

City of Sioux Falls Forestry Dept needs to concentrate on growing BRAINS instead of TREES


Yeah, I shook my head to after reading the above postcard (that I did not receive though I live in the neighborhood, a neighbor a few blocks away showed it to me).

This program all got started after a few homeowners who live close to Waterford were upset because (God forbid) Waterford had to tear down a couple of trees to build their expansion (on land they own, that will help residents with therapy on premise).

Waterford was probably tired of the trail of tears running down Phillips avenue so they donated money to the neighborhood to plant 100 trees.

That part is a fantastic idea.

Where it takes a turn to the lobotomy clinic is wanting to plant those trees in the boulevard. After all the headache we have had in the historic neighborhoods with tree rubbish after the ice storm you would have thought we learned our lesson about boulevard trees (FEMA gave us $10 million for cleanup). Not to mention the many other concerns with them.

When Project TRIM rolls around they make you trim those trees if they are impeding street and sidewalk traffic, they also wreak havoc on water, sewer and gas lines. They also impede power and cable lines, and traffic site issues. Enough already!

We need to prohibit the planting of boulevard trees in Sioux Falls, in ALL neighborhoods. I encourage the group to plant the trees in parks and green spaces or set back in front or back yards of people’s homes, but lets grow something besides trees, lets grow a brain, and stop planting trees in the boulevard and plant vegetable gardens and flowers in that space instead.