Archive for Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Pool lauded

September 5, 2012

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To the editor:

Because Lawrence has one of the outstanding aquatics programs in Kansas, I’m writing to correct a few comments that have been raised in other letters.

The issue of pre-Labor Day closure of outdoor pools due to the lack of qualified lifeguards is one that community pools face throughout the country. The availability of lifeguards diminishes in mid-August, which reduces the ability of the pool staff to provide a safe environment.

The indoor and outdoor pools in Lawrence require 14 lifeguards each to provide adequate supervision. I’ve spoken with many of the aquatic professionals in Kansas, and these issues are not unique to Lawrence. The good news is that Lawrence has an outstanding Indoor Aquatic Center that is open after the outdoor pool closes. It offers lap lanes, diving boards, water slides and a zero-depth family pool.

In terms of hours of operation, the Outdoor Aquatic Center is open for lessons in the morning until 12:45 p.m. The policy allows the aquatics division to provide over 2,500 children swim lessons annually, which is vital to a healthy community.

The lack of lifeguards after the start of school is one that impacts most public and private aquatic facilities. Many of the guards are students who depart when school starts. As someone who works closely with those who operate aquatic facilities throughout the state, I feel comfortable in expressing my opinion that Lawrence offers one of the best public pool programs available in Kansas.

Comments

Cindy Wallace 2 years, 8 months ago

....and would it not be feasible to possibly close the INDOOR AQUATICS for the 2-3 week period leading up to Labor Day and use THOSE lifeguards at the OUTDOOR AQUATIC facility since both require the same number of lifeguards? It seems ludicrous to take away the outdoor pool so early in one of the average warmest months of summer.

Also, I find it unusual the the Outdoor facility closes as early as it does, when open. My thought would be to have it open until 10 p.m. each night. Another suggestion is to have an Adults Only Night once a week.... Anyone in agreement?

Lawrence Morgan 2 years, 8 months ago

clc1298 - Those are very good ideas!

I completely agree, closing the outdoor pool doesn't make any sense in warm weather. And I also agree that a 10 o'clock closing during the summer makes much more sense.

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