Hours of Operation - The Five Rivers Fountain of Lights runs through Labor Day.
Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day: Monday-Friday, 6:56 am - 9:54 pm, and weekends 10:56 am - 9:54 pm. The fountains operate for 8 minute intervals straddling the top of the
hour during the aforementioned daily run schedule.
Note: The fountain system may be disabled at anytime during a
particular 8 minute interval run time due to wind speeds that exceed
the systems wind limits in a particular direction.
For additional information contact Paul Williams, Regional Park Manager at (937) 277-4831.
The fountain's majesty is echoed even when the fountain is not running.
Sixty-foot stainless steel and aluminum spires adorn the tops of the
fountain towers. These sculptural pieces of architecture reflect
sunlight and create beautiful moray patterns. The spires are lit
throughout the year by 25 "intelligent lights" that can produce an
infinite number of colors.
Planning the Fountains
When the Five Rivers Fountain of Lights was originally conceived, the first (and
most obvious) question that came to mind was, “Where will we get all that water?”
The original idea was to pull water from the river, but we quickly realized that
the silt levels and low flow of river water would lead to tremendous construction
costs and a maintenance nightmare. Instead, groundwater is used. Dayton sits
atop one of the most prolific aquifers in the United States - the Great Miami Buried
Valley Aquifer. This aquifer, created by an ancient lake now buried under millennia
of sediment, underlies the course of the Great Miami, Mad and Stillwater Rivers
and is up to three miles wide.
Water for the Fountains
Water to the fountain is provided by seven wells that tap the aquifer. Prior to
building the fountain, the RiverScape partnership asked for opinions from the City
of Dayton, the Miami Conservancy District and the Ohio EPA regarding the potential
effect of the fountain. All three organizations agreed that the fountain will not
harm the aquifer. In fact, groundwater in the area is so plentiful that many downtown
buildings continuously operate dewatering pumps to prevent groundwater from entering
their basements. These pumps discharge more water into the rivers daily than is
used by the Five Rivers Fountain in the same period.
To ensure that the fountains will never impact the aquifer or the community water
systems in the region, ongoing groundwater level and quality monitoring will be
conducted by The Miami Conservancy District's Groundwater Preservation Program.
Observation wells have been installed at each tower to record monthly water level
readings. These readings will be compared to historical monitoring data to ensure
the health of the water, both in terms of environment and the area's water supply.