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Cover Story www.parkworld-online.com


Water Features


Empex has designed several categories of interactive water features to enhance the aquatic play experience.


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Above: The city of Aguas de Sao Pedro is located in the scenic mountains of Sao Paulo. Its status as a leading source of natural and therapeutic spring water makes it a popular tourist destination in Brazil.


Interactive Watertoys The user creates a water


jet, by constantly pedaling in the case of the Waterbike; by turning a handle in the case of the Watershooter; rocking back and forth in the case of the Squirtin’ Frog or pumping with an up-and-down motion in the case of the Watertotter.


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to offer the site long-lasting, reliable water features with a lifetime corrosion warranty - meaning a long-lasting attraction that will delight guests for years to come.


Fun for all ages Empex designed the area to accommodate children up to twelve years of age, with a preschool area and an additional waterslide complex for older teens and adults. The splashpark has two climb and slide Aquadeks, each


for a different age group, preschool and ages 5-12. The large tipping buckets have proved a particular hit, with kids running around the park trying to catch each one as it dumps a large splash of water below. The use of different heights of water features caters to children of different ages, with the preschool area separated from the older children. The preschool area utilizes low level features and ground jets, which are suited to little ones. Empex has designed each water feature to be a different


architectural presentation of water. Each feature presents water in a different form or spray pattern, offering the ultimate in interactive play for the children and adults alike. Interactive water play is an ever-increasing trend within


the playground market, and the demand for splashparks is constantly increasing in municipal parks and recreation centres, hotels and resorts, campgrounds, zoos, FEC’s, waterparks, theme parks - and even less obvious places, such as shopping malls. Interactive water play - having a user’s input create a variable output or response from a water feature - is the trend of the day, and can be achieved through a number of watertoy designs. The simplest form of interactivity is created with water itself as it cascades down upon you, or sprays on you in one way or another. Different jets shooting from different directions, for example, can create different feelings or sensations; tickling, pricking, coating, soothing and amazing the user by stimulating the senses in different ways.


OCTOBER 2017


Aquatons Simple interactivity is created


without moving parts by simply using the hands. Static play structures (or Aquatecture) have varied nozzle designs, meaning that when the fingers of the user block one nozzle, the other water jets become stronger. Often other children are called in to participate in this interactive behavior, leading to many children working together to cause the craziest water jet possible.


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nteractivity with water is a physical learning experience for young children. Children unconsciously learn subtle lessons about water pressure and water flow, cause and


effect, and some basic yet important lessons in physics and fluid dynamics. The splashpark becomes almost like a giant science experiment, demonstrating the physical aspects of pressure, volume, and trajectory. What’s more, as many features require more than one child to gain a certain effect, children also learn about group interaction. The water play creates important social interaction between two or more children, leading to valuable lessons in beneficial social behaviors such as cooperation and teamwork. Most importantly, however, splashparks create a relaxing


experience for parents who can interact with the kids in the water or interact with a book on the sidelines, knowing the children are safe and away from deep water. In the busy lives of guests, Empex splashparks offer a tremendous opportunity for parents to spend quality time with their children – something all too often overlooked in day-to-day life.


Using the feet This third design allows


users to interact simply by using the feet, with no moving parts. The Aquajetz, which are ground jets with different nozzle designs, are controlled by the feet - stopping the flow of a nozzle with the foot will change the effect of the other jets.


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Sector wheel In these, interactivity is


achieved by turning the sector wheels. Aquanetic structures provide a handwheel whereby the participant affects the outcomes by turning the wheel and selecting and activating a different water-based event, such as activating a specific spray array, pattern or spinning pinwheel or a set of turning gears.


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