A dedication ceremony was held Aug. 7 for the new Riverlife Park along the Wausau East Riverfront area north of Wausau on the Water (WOW). The park officially opened June 28.

dedicated the first phase of public amenities including the river wharf, public seating plazas and the extension of the River’s Edge Parkway,” said Mayor Robert Mielke. “I noted then that if the 400 Block was Wausau’s living room, then our riverfront is our front porch. Dedicating these outstanding park amenities, which have been thoughtfully designed to be inviting to a variety of users of all ages, is yet another milestone for the City.”

ttractions include a unique skywalk, spinners, climbing nets, group swing, and multiple cardio fitness machines and stationary weights. There is also equipment for children ages 2-5. The park also includes a challenge course where users can time themselves completing the course or users can compete for time against other users.

It is open to the public and free to visit.

“The public response and reception of the new Riverlife Park has been quite amazing,” Mielke said. “I hear every day that our investment in this park is one of best things the City has ever done.” The $4.7-million Riverlife Park was funded with a combination of tax increment financing and private donations, along with grants from the federal, state and county government.

The new park and the entire area is the result of a decade-long process of acquiring blighted properties, remediating environmental issues, and planning out a waterfront that engages citizens.

Last August, the City started fundraising for sponsorship opportunities in Riverlife Park and millions of dollars were pledged by local foundations, families, and businesses. There are still a few opportunities for sponsorship including a future planned games plaza and climbing wall that would be included in future phases.

Tax deductible donations for sponsorship opportunities along the new Riverlife area can be made by check to the City of Wausau, c/o Community Development 407 Grant Street, Wausau, WI 54403 or to the Community Foundation of Northcentral Wisconsin at its website at www.cfoncw.org (noting the Riverlife Park Fund).