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What do you think about having a flat rate for the pool regardless of age?

Asked at Lawrence Outdoor Aquatic Center, 727 Ky. on July 7, 2007

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Photo of Christi Walters

“It would eliminate confusion about the prices, but I think it would be frustrating for people with little kids.”

Photo of Vinnette Morgan

“I don’t think everybody should have to pay the same price, because different age groups are getting more out of it.”

Photo of Brent Crandon

“I personally think that since there are so many children here, they should get a break on the price. The kids should be encouraged to use the pool, and I don’t mind paying a little more if the kids can pay a little less.”

Photo of Maria Layton

“Actually, I think children should pay less than the parents. Seniors should get a discount, and babies should be free.”


jonas 10 years, 4 months ago

hitme: Wow, it would be like our own little Party Cove, wouldn't it?

I'd maybe go for swim with an eel day, though.

50YearResident 10 years, 4 months ago

$4.00 per day x 5 days week x 8 weeks = $160.00 for 1 kid. Way too high for any family.

sgtwolverine 10 years, 4 months ago

I don't like the sound of that. Kids should be cheaper.

I'm in Wichita right now. What do they charge for their pool? Do they have a pool?

kansasnative 10 years, 4 months ago

Let me get this straight - the KIDS' prices should be raised in order to pay for the T bus that they may take to the pool and the road maintenance that the buses drive over to get our kids to the pool. ok - um sounds reasonable? to me? Surely I am misunderstanding......... this is just crazy. I can't wait to see what they come up with next - maybe charging admission to the Parks & Rec ball games and putting a quarter in a machine to use the park swings or slides??? Great, I just gave them an idea.

letsgetwise 10 years, 4 months ago

I think the price they're proposing is way high, and I think they're proposing that for a reason. When everyone complains enough, they'll bring the proposal to something less, still probably keep a price break for kids, and then the public won't complain so much. Personally, I haven't liked the price of the pool anyway. And, even though what we have is nice...what we had was fine. I think it would serve Lawrence better to have another OUTDOOR pool. That's my 2 cents. As for the T... it would be nice if there were some specials offered there. KC has days where it only costs a quarter to ride. I believe it was last year (maybe 2 ago) that I saw Topeka advertising summer specials for students to ride. It would be great if the schedule could accommodate to the school schedules where there are stops near, say, the high schools and maybe junior highs. I know I figured up once it would have been cheaper for my kids to ride the T, pay both ways 5 days a week and it would have been cheaper than the school bus. If the schedules were more accommodating that could be a possibility to help get more riders. And yes, if my kids acted up, then kick them off.

Kat Christian 10 years, 4 months ago

I think the price charged for the pool is high right now. I don't have a lot of free time so when I get some and go to the pool it's usually only about an hour maybe two. Not 4 hours which would be a bargain at the prices charges. So I feel ripped off - that is why I don't go anymore - haven't been in 2 years and just bought a pool of my own. Have had it going on 3 years and it has paid for itself already by me not going to the pool. I think the price should be lowered. More people would go and in the long run the city will gain more money.

Flap Doodle 10 years, 4 months ago

Charge by displacement & then ban everybody.

JayCat_67 10 years, 4 months ago

Raising the pool fee has nothing to do with paying for the bus service. Unfortunately, the public transit office was one of the first to present the idea of charging more to prevent a cut in services. Other city offices, including parks and rec, followed suit. Maybe if they'd quit spending money on ridiculous lawsuits against big retailers, or consultants to make all their friggin' decisions for them, try fixing the roads instead installing "traffic calming devices" every 1/4 mile, and maybe passing on a pile or two of scrap lumber that someone tells them is a sculpture, the city wouldn't be in this silly mess. Also, haven't been up Kasold yet today. Since the work is officially "done", have they gone ahead and raised the speed limit? Or, will it be a 20 MPH speed construction zone speed trap for the next three months? (Anyone remember 6th street a couple of years ago?)

Bobbi Walls 10 years, 4 months ago

It is hard enough now, for me to afford taking my kids to the pool. Thankfully my 2 year old is free. However, my 8 year old wants to go all the time, and I cannot afford it now, let alone if they raise it to a flat rate across the board.

erod0723 10 years, 4 months ago

I think the groups that use the pool the most should get charged the most. Let's milk the little kiddies for all they have. This will serve two purposes: Keep the little snots from wreaking so much havoc at the pool; teach kids a valuable lesson early on that government screws you over. We'd be getting them nice and disillusioned at an early age!

Dayna Lee 10 years, 4 months ago

You guys must not have brought a kid to the pool lately. I can promise you it costs more to bring a 5-12 year old. The gate is lower, but the snacks are where they get you. The kids are the reason the pool is there. It's a park! Let's start charging a fee everytime you go into one of the other parks....crazy idea, huh? I think what this town needs to do is to find ways to sell things that don't cost a lot to pay for things like parks. Maybe a tie die benefit. Or, how about you have the parks and rec kids do some art and SELL IT.

erod0723 10 years, 4 months ago

Dayna, Would you really buy art that some child made? Not to sound condescending, but most of the art that children produce has value only to the kid's parents.

erod0723 10 years, 4 months ago

Pywacket, Why not? Kids gotta learn at some point that life is full of disappointment and the presence of taxes and fees. (BTW, I was being tongue in cheek.)

sunflower_sue 10 years, 4 months ago

Sounds like the chemicals in the pool have sucked the sarcastometers out of some of you.

If we go to the pool, it is the indoor one and it is only to swim laps...because I am a mean mom and only want my kids to think of a pool as work! At $4, though, I'll just buy them a gym membership and they can swim laps there after they've done the circuit. insert whip cracking sound here :)

Bobbi Walls 10 years, 4 months ago

Pywacket, I know it was a joke. I just thing you are an idiot in general! Or maybe just completely assanine. Wow, I love being called riffraff! It makes me feel all great inside. Why are you calling me riffraff? Are you jealous???

Bobbi Walls 10 years, 4 months ago

This town is so against kids having fun. They wonder why there are some many juveniles in trouble. OUR kids have nothing to do. This town used to be fun. Skating rink, putt putt, etc. And it was affordable. Now, you have to choose between recreational stuff for your kids, or food. Kids need a place to have fun, and hang out with friends.

Bobbi Walls 10 years, 4 months ago

Pywacket, your comment about being financially ready to have kids is absurd. I don't know anyone, that was every "financially ready" for kids. We were financially ready, until my husband was diagnosed with a brain tumor, that has now left him unable to work and us living on social security.It is hard enough to support yourself in this town when you live below the poverty line. My kids are both involved in local activities through parks and rec, I am talking about other options such as skating, etc.

Bobbi Walls 10 years, 4 months ago

You are right Pilgrim, and I do tell them no. However, they are kids and deserve to have fun even though our situation does not always allow for the extra spending money.

Dayna Lee 10 years, 4 months ago

They aren't looking to raise prices to cover the cost, they want to make a profit to fund other things!!!

Dayna Lee 10 years, 4 months ago

Do you spend more than $16 a month? They do offer a month pass. I wonder if they'd be willing to do a fee waiver if the price really went that high? They do one with the parks and rec park programs. P.S. I've bought a lot of kid produced art in my day.

Bobbi Walls 10 years, 4 months ago

Pywacket, do you know me? No, I didn't think so. I do not drink neither does my husband. I am a full time student majoring in Criminal Justice. My husband is unable to work because he has seizures and memory loss. I was working for the IRS when my husband became ill. He was working rebuilding hydraulics for large trucks including military vehicles. My insurance was great, but his had not kicked in yet, because he switched companies. We ended up with over 1 million dollars in bills including medical, mortgage, car payments, etc. Things were very hard. We went from making over $70k a year to making about $25k, and then even lower when we moved back to Lawrence, from Blue Springs. I budget $700 a month to pay bills, rent, and medical expenses. There is not a lot left over after that. You try living on $700 a month in this town... bet you wouldn't make it 5 years like we have!!

Your Welcome!

Linda Endicott 10 years, 4 months ago

dbrm...while I sympathize with your situation...

I grew up in a town that had a pool...and we were poor as dirt. Guess what? Never went to it. Couldn't afford the fee to get in, and that was back in the dinosaur days.

Never was involved in city recreation, either, like softball, or T-ball, or whatever kind of ball they were touting back then. Again, it cost money to be involved in that.

We were sometimes bored in the summer. We sometimes had nothing to do. Guess what? We never got in trouble. Even being bored, our first thought wouldn't have been vandalizing someone's property, or knocking off a 7-11 or anything like that. And if that had been our first thought, our mother would have just knocked it right back out again.

And we didn't even have all those handy-dandy little eletronic gadgets like video games, computers, and iPods. We had one old black and white TV (whichever one was given to us at the time). We had no cable, and got three whole channels...five on a good day.

When did society get to a point where we think children have to be entertained all the time? When did we start thinking that boredom was a fate worse than death? Hell, sometimes I still get bored. Still haven't been in trouble.

Where did my mother go right?

We created our own entertainment, and harmless entertainment at that. We tied the hose to the clothesline pole and had a wonderful time taking what we called "shower baths". Or we'd get one of those little backyard kiddie pools and have a great time. We played with dolls sometimes. Played with toy cars sometimes. Sometimes we read books. Sometimes we played outside with sticks and rocks, or leaves and snow in the fall and winter, and still had a great time.

If you're teaching your kids that being entertained and having a good time has to involve something made out of plastic, with bells and whistles, or it has to cost money and require going somewhere so many times a week, you're doing them a disservice.

Evan Ridenour 10 years, 4 months ago

I don't understand why so many people feel entitled to an unreasonably cheap public pool. Considering the amount of time spent in the pool for a $4.00 admittance fee it is a really good deal. If you can't afford that well too bad. It isn't the cities fault that you choose to have children without having the financial resources to care for them.

What about those of us who don't use the pool at all? Why should such a significant chunk of tax dollars be spent heavily subsidizing a service that is NONESSENTIAL and only beneficial to a percentage of Lawrence residents?

$4.00 is cheap, get over it.

Bobbi Walls 10 years, 4 months ago

Okay, my problem with raising the fee to $4.00 is why should I spent that much for my 2 year old, that will only be in the water for a short amount of time? I can see ages maybe 6 and up, but why the toddlers or babies?

I have no shame in anything I have said on here or lville for that matter. I am not living my life for anyone but me and my kids. My kids do have a kiddie pool in the backyard, a sandbox, playgym, etc. They also go to the library and get books, go to story time etc. We do not buy them everything they want, just what they need.

My oldest daughter plays softball with parks and rec. She hopes to someday play college level ball, while studying to be a doctor or vet. Why not push my kids to do something that they enjoy. I am not forcing them to do anything they don't want to do.

I don't look to the city, to provide free entertainment for my kids, only affordable. If the rates go to high, we can always join the Y in Bonner Springs, and the whole family can be healthy and enjoy themselves.

perkins 10 years, 4 months ago

When I was a kid we would turn on the sprinkler and run around the back yard. Quite cheap and cooled us off. But I agree with those who suggest that of course kids should pay less than adults. Lawrence is an expensive place to live, but we adults presumably have more discretionary income than the kids.

Linda Endicott 10 years, 4 months ago

If they have a kiddie pool and stuff in the backyard, dbrm, then why would you want to take them to the public pool, where they could catch some disease? It's happened before.

I wouldn't want to take the risk.

Bobbi Walls 10 years, 4 months ago

crazy because my oldest likes to "swim" and not just splash around in the water like the baby. As far as catching a disease, give me a break. If you are referencing the crypto outbreak, that can happen anywhere. I worry more about what germs my kid gets off the shopping cart at Dillons on Mass.

manyblessings 10 years, 4 months ago

I think they should charge less for kids. It is a community responsibility to provide healthy and/or educational activities for children at a low cost. It is in everyone's best interest for there to be acceptable entertainment for children other than watching T.V and playing video games all day or getting into trouble. For families that can't afford to swim at a low price they should offer scholarships, like the YMCA does.

Pywacket- Your attitude towards families and having only children they can "afford" reeks of self righteousness. I hope you are never in a position where the income you have is ripped out from under you and you get a little taste of what it is like for the less fortunate.

Linda Endicott 10 years, 4 months ago

I don't think it's a communities responsibility to provide healthy and/or educational activities for children at low cost at all.

That is YOUR responsibility.

There are thousands and thousands of small communities all across the country that have no pool, or ball parks, or anything else. Somehow, people manage to raise children in those communities, too.

Be thankful that you have it available, instead of whining that it isn't exactly how you'd like it to be.

Perhaps they should charge for use of the pool based on how long you're there, regardless of age. Make it so much per hour, or half hour.

And it's not a RIGHT to have a community pool. It's a privilege. A lot of places don't have one at all.

Bobbi Walls 10 years, 4 months ago

crazy, I grew up in Tongie and McLouth. Tongie has a pool McLouth does not. We used the pool in Tongie on a daily basis, and maybe spent .75 to get in. The concessions were reasonable, and the kids were in an environment that made summer fun. We also used the pool in Tongie for PE classes in high school. They were a small town at the time, and Oskie still is. I think that it is in the best interest of the town to have something for kids to do. Not free, but just something they can do to keep them from running the streets.

manyblessings 10 years, 4 months ago

crazyks (Anonymous) says:

I don't think it's a communities responsibility to provide healthy and/or educational activities for children at low cost at all.

That is YOUR responsibility

Maybe we should get rid of the library and community centers and parks too then.

coolmarv 10 years, 4 months ago

The price keeps my family of four from going to often. You have to go for at least three hours to make it worth while. We used to like running down to the pool for an hour or so but not anymore. What are the prices in Eudora's new pool?

Kam_Fong_as_Chin_Ho 10 years, 4 months ago

Okay, my problem with raising the fee to $4.00 is why should I spent that much for my 2 year old?

Your kid isn't worth spending $4 on?


Kathy Gates 10 years, 4 months ago

As long as they raise the fees for the T and for Eagle Bend when they raise the pool fees! Somebody on here commented that the city isn't required to provide a pool. They don't have to provide a bus service or a golf course either.

blessed3x 10 years, 4 months ago

Why should pool goers pay for the "T"? Why not raise the price of a ride on the "T"?

As far as raising the price, if the pool received no tax money, I would say let them charge what they want and let the free market show whether it was the right choice or not. However, I believe the pool does receive tax dollars. In that case, the cost of the pool should be limited to what will generate enough revenue to cover the operating expenses of the pool (not the "T", library, firestations, etc...).

JayCat_67 10 years, 4 months ago

Blessed; read my comment above. The "T" already raised their rates from $.50 to $.75 for the transit buses and from $1.00 to $1.50 on paratransit. These will go up again January 1 to $1.00 and $2.00 respectively. All city service departments have or will be looking at ways to generate more revenue for themselves to avoid a cut in services. No increase in one is going to pay for another. Will water bills start going up? Trash service? You already know property taxes are about to rise again. While I don't like fees for services going up, it's going to happen. Inflation affects everything, including public services. But, before they do start jacking rates, I'd just like to see a little accountability for the money that has been spent already.

Bobbi Walls 10 years, 4 months ago

Pywacket, you are a saint aren't you? My kids may live below the poverty line, but there are no drugs, alcohol, or abuse going on. My oldest is very well educated, and reads at a 5th grade level, but is only in 3rd. My youngest is learning at the pace she should be. I didn't get knocked up. I became pregnant by my husband after 3 years of marriage. We have been together for almost 13. We do not have kids for financial gain. We had kids, because it was god's plan for us to have them. I do entertain my kids. We have game days, play outside, etc. However a nice break from that is going to the pool. It should not be as expensive as a trip to the zoo or an amusement park though. It should be affordable for all, not just the wealthier class that live in town such as yourself.

Bobbi Walls 10 years, 4 months ago

Kam-- I cannot justify spending $4.00 on my toddler, when they only use a portion of the pool, not the slides, lap pool,etc. My 8 year old does use all of the amenities, so I could see charging a higher price, but not the same across the board.

Tammy Yergey 10 years, 4 months ago

There are a lot of self-righteous people out there. Scary how everyone is so judgemental of others. I don't understand why people feel they have to degrade others.

The pool is a service, much like the library (as mentioned by someone else), but should be kept at a reasonable cost. 1. It keeps kids busy (i.e. out of trouble!) and 2. It provides for healthy exercise, which in this day and age of obese children, we need to provide as much exercise as possible.

As for me, I have 6 children (three by marriage), and yes, at $4 a pop, I would be less-inclined to send my kids to the pool. I make plenty of money, so that is not the issue, but I do have to budget. So that would mean more days of the kids sitting at home playing video games (yeah! that is SO HEALTHY!), as I do work and cannot make sure that my kids go out and play, even if I beg them to.

What would happen? If they increase to $4 a person, I predict it will backfire. The city will not make more money, but rather, fewer people will go to the pool. I would bet, at best, the pool will make the same amount of money as they are currently making.

TheLawrenceFox 10 years, 4 months ago

Everyone take a deep breath... now let it out...

If you read the memo from the city manager you would see that toddlers 4 and under would still be free. And as a little insider tip for those of us that actually use the pool and not just complain about it... monthly passes are available for $16 a person unlimited. My kids and I swim for $32 a month (one is only 3 years old). We go every day after work and at least once on the weekend. I suppose in any given month we visit the pool 20 or more times. For us the membership is paid for after 5 visits and the rest of the month is "free." If I paid daily admission at todays prices we'd be kicking out $125 for the same number of visits.

Do the math.

BTW, it's HOT outside!

planetwax 10 years, 4 months ago

There are two reasons I go to the pool rarely. One is the cost. It is NOT cheap, in my opinion. The other reason is the CHLORINE. Chlorine is horrible stuff that gets absorbed into the skin and causes illness, namely asthma. It is also detrimental to the environment. European pools don't use it. Why do we have to use chlorine in our pools? Ozone treated pools are a safe, effective, alternative. See here:, and specifically about pool water treatment here:

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