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GRAFTON - Raging Rivers Water Park was named May's Small Business of the Month by the River Bend Growth Association (RBGA) weeks before the park opens for the 2016 season.
The Small Business of the Month Award recipients are given signage as well as a $4,200 promotional package. The award is given to locally-owned small businesses, which are members of the RBGA. Raging Rivers has won the honor several times, and was given the RBGA "Captain of the River Bend" Award in 2015.
Award winners are chosen by community nomination. Businesses in the River Bend networked with RBGA then submit applications. Those applications are reviewed by a committee, which chooses them based on several factors such as, number of employees, community involvement, innovation and reputation.
"It's a very competitive award," RBGA director of member services, Trish Holmes, said. "The winners are very deserving of the award."
Raging Rivers General Manager Donna Smith said she was "thrilled" to receive the award. She said she was excited for the season to begin on May 28, as well.
"We've don't have any new attractions this year, but we've got a lot of work done to the park," she said.
Park improvements include, a new seamless swirl pool. Smith said one of the two pools went seamless last season, but now they both have the improvement. The seamless design allows people to travel faster on the ride without seams scratching backs and hindering the experience. She said they have made cosmetic improvements to "Itty Bitty Surf City," a kids' park within Raging Rivers.
"You have to go there, and just be surprised by it," said Scott Adams, one of the park's owners. "It really pops."
Adams said Raging Rivers was an excellent "stay-cation" getaway, and said visitors to the park could "get away from it all for a few days" in Grafton. He cited the village's expanding restaurant selection and lodging accommodations as well as Raging Rivers.
Raging Rivers began on July 4, 1990. Adams said it is "new every year" with improvements. This year, the park hired a staff of 160, who are preparing for the annual employee orientation event.