COEUR d'ALENE - Take the McEuen Field project on the whole, or pick any one of its dozens of proposed amenities and either way, opinions will vary.
Love it, hate it, too expensive, incredibly affordable or anything in between, so spreads the reaction to revamping the downtown park.
Or, as Rick Knott put it at Thursday's open house: "I'm for some of the stuff and I'm not for some of the stuff."
Knott was one of roughly 200 who stopped by the public workshop on the park's conceptual design, where officials and designers hung a gallery of pictures in a step-by-step display, complete with itemized estimated costs and discussed the plan with visitors.
For Knott, he likes the plan overall, but takes a pass on the fountain.
"It doesn't need to be a monster," he said.
Big picture, the McEuen Field project is a conceptual vision, one that the city could build out over years and years. Not every one of the proposed perks, from splash pads to dog parks, would be built at once.
It could be phased in as funding becomes available down the line. But the workshop gave the public a chance to ask questions and give feedback on the plan as the park's steering committee gets ready to recommend a vision to the Coeur d'Alene City Council to adopt or not.
That meeting has been scheduled for 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 24. It's the only item on the agenda, and is being held at Woodland Middle School for the large crowd expected to turn out for the plan that has stirred passionate, polar opinions on all sides.
Thursday wasn't any different.
Costs, timing, and will the proposed new boat launch at Silver Beach count as equal or better value as promised?
"We keep harping at them and they just don't listen," said Keith Peila, wearing a makeshift boat for a hat in support of keeping the launch where it is. Silver Beach's launch has two lanes, below the five at the Third Street Launch, he pointed out, so "where's the equal or better?"
Ron and Sherrie Dayton, Kootenai County residents, felt it was being spruced up for tourists more so than locals.
"We feel like there's a lot of better places to spend the money," Ron Dayton said.
But for Sanders Beach neighborhood residents Chris and Sara Meyer, they like the thought of their 8-month-old boy Jamie having a grand park to play in as he grows older.
"This is an investment for the future generation and we can't pass it up," Chris Meyer said. "I know it's a difficult decision to make, but we can't afford to miss the opportunity."
He said he's confident the city will make the right decision and approve a plan.
That could be the next step. Comment cards were filled out at the workshop and will be submitted for more public comment for the steering committee to consider. Through surveys, written comments, emails, petitions and public comment, thousands of opinions have been shared one way or the other.
The first public meeting on the plan was in January. Thursday's open house could have been the final gathering before it goes before the City Council for a vote.
The steering committee will meet next week to decide its recommendation.