Hickory City Council unanimously approved a naming request from the Hickory Kiwanis Club and the Western Catawba County Kiwanis Club for the "Charles D. Dixon Memorial Splash Pad" at Kiwanis Park.
Kiwanis International celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2015, coinciding with the decision of the Hickory Kiwanis and Western Catawba County Kiwanis Clubs to partner with the City of Hickory to fund construction of the splash pad. The two Kiwanis Clubs pledged to raise $100,000 towards the construction costs in return for receiving naming rights to the splash pad. The Kiwanis Clubs' $100,000 commitment pledge has now been paid in full.
The naming request was first presented to the Parks and Recreation Commission at its January 9 meeting. The Parks and Recreation Commission unanimously endorsed the naming request and recommended its consideration by City Council.
At the February 6 City Council meeting, Parks and Recreation Director Mack McLeod recommended consideration of the Hickory Kiwanis Club's and the Western Catawba County Kiwanis Club's naming request of "Charles D. Dixon Memorial Splash Pad" at Kiwanis Park. Bruce Blackburn from the Hickory Kiwanis Club and David Parsons from the Western Catawba County Kiwanis Club, who led the fundraising efforts for their respective clubs, both spoke on behalf of the Clubs in support of the naming request.
Charles D. Dixon was a long-time Hickory attorney and an active member of the Hickory Kiwanis Club for 51 years. He was a strong community leader, serving Hickory in many different capacities over the years, until his passing in 2016. The two Kiwanis Clubs proposed naming the splash pad the "Charles D. Dixon Memorial Splash Pad" to honor Dixon's considerable fundraising efforts for both the Zahra Baker All Children's Playground and the splash pad at Kiwanis Park, and to recognize his work in his community throughout the years.
"As a fellow Kiwanian, I am pleased that the City Council approved this request for the splash pad to be named in memory of such a great man. Charlie served our community well in many different facets," said Parks and Recreation Director Mack McLeod. "This honor is certainly well deserved and fitting for a man who made such an impact in our community, both professionally and personally."
A dedication ceremony for the "Charles D. Dixon Memorial Splash Pad" will be held this spring, before the splash pad officially reopens on May 1.