SPRING HILL — The Sessa family is stepping to the plate once again to provide an entertainment option for young people who whine, "There's nothing to do in Hernando County."
Opening Tuesday at 9227 County Line Road, Springleton Fun Park will feature go-carts, miniature golf, a video game arcade, kiddie train rides, a bounce house, plus carnival-theme food and other tasty treats.
The 7-acre site, former home to an aging amusement park, has been renovated and attractions added "to provide a safe environment for children and families to engage in outdoor activities," said owner Nick Sessa.
"Everything is modern and clean," Sessa said. "There are plenty of activities for kiddies, and parents, too."
Sessa enthuses over the go-cart track, with 10 new, state-of-the-art carts; an 18-hole, obstacle-laced miniature golf course in a scenic setting, and a food concession truck equipped to bake brick-oven pizza.
The kiddie train will traverse the entire park with an engine pulling three cabooses — since everyone wants to ride in a caboose.
Twenty video games, with redemption prizes, will be showcased in a 3,000-square-foot building, which also provides space for birthday and other parties, as well as corporate outings. Attached is a covered outdoor patio where parents might choose to sit, partaking of ice cream and other snacks, while their offspring enjoy the attractions, Sessa said.
Pursuant to a safe environment, Sessa said, lighting has been installed throughout the site, surveillance cameras have been erected and an off-duty sheriff's deputy will be on-site Friday and Saturday evenings.
The park will close to accommodate special outings, for which picnic barbecues and outdoor music will be added. Birthday packages will be offered.
The park also plans to team with groups sponsoring school functions, donating a portion of the admission fees to the school. Sessa noted that school specials at the Locomo roller skating emporium, which his family opened on County Line Road in August 2012, raised more than $21,000 for Hernando schools last year.
Sessa's son-in-law, Chris Milano, 29, who manages Locomo, will also oversee the fun park, while Milano's mother, Beverly Milano, will serve as one of the park's managing employees.
Tuesday is designated as the park's soft opening. A grand opening will be scheduled in a few weeks.
The Sessa family's entertainment enterprises in Hernando County date back to the late 1990s, when Nick and his brother, Sal, opened a roller skating center.
The family also established and operated the Show Palace Dinner Theatre in Hudson and the Palace Grand in Spring Hill, though they are no longer involved in those endeavors. Last year, Nick Sessa took over operation of the dining room and added entertainment at Silverthorn Golf and Country Club. Other family members own and operate two Rookies Sports Bar & Grill locations in Spring Hill.
Beth Gray can be contacted at [email protected]