The Siloam Springs Kayak Park is a One-Of-A-Kind Destination
The City of Siloam Springs and Grand River Dam Authority (GRDA) are working together to bring whitewater excitement to the Illinois River that runs through Siloam Springs. Officials hope it will become an unparalleled whitewater experience by 2023; kayakers and rafters should find this an unmissable spot to visit. GRDA will use natural features of the river as well as engineered sections where water levels can be controlled to create this one-of-a-kind destination for kayakers and rafters. Watts and Westville Fire Departments as well as Benton County Sheriff’s Office and emergency medical services are working alongside each other to assist those using this facility.
Are You Looking to Kayak or Float on the River in Siloam Springs? Visit Siloam Springs Kayak Park located at 19253 Fisher Ford Road for all their river kayaking and floating needs. It is advised that all participants wear lifejackets at all times while those under 18 should be supervised by an adult. Also, all floaters should bring food, water and any additional personal items that they may require during their adventure.
Northwest Arkansas offers many opportunities for recreational float, boat and kayak enthusiasts to experience whitewater activities on the Illinois River; however, Siloam Springs’ Kayak Park stands out due to its tailoring for whitewater activities. Specifically designed with rapids and riverbank features that make exploring easy for anyone.
A new riverbank provides families with a safe space, while the park will feature picnic areas, restrooms and an area for spectators to watch the action unfold. The City of Siloam Springs partnered with Grand River Dam Authority on this project, funded in part by Walton Family Foundation – making this gift one that will continue giving. Sullivan described this gift as one that keeps giving back year after year.
Last week, the Greater River Drainage Area Agency issued a warning for those planning on floating down the river to take extra caution and act responsibly. They advised those who don’t consider themselves strong swimmers to remain off of it altogether and those on rafts or boats to forgo drinking alcohol while floating. Furthermore, they strongly advised life jacket use while floating.
People reported over the weekend seeing intoxicated rafters floating down the river, forcing authorities to rescue some. Even after warnings against visiting the river, some individuals still went there despite these risks.
Friends and family of 16-year-old Evan Thomas are grieving his passing after his drowning at Siloam Springs Whitewater Recreational Park on Tuesday night. Thomas had been swimming in an engineered section when he went missing; 200 yards downstream his body was discovered.
When entering the water, he wore a life jacket but that alone wasn’t enough to save him. Officials have not determined what caused his death but say he did not appear distressed at any point during his swim.