Enhancements to Kamsack Swimming Pool nearly complete; focus now on fundraising

With the enhancements to the Kamsack Swimming Pool nearly complete, the focus is now turning to raising nearly $67,000 to finish paying for it.

That fundraising continues on September 15 at the Co-op Fuel Good Day when 10 cents a litre of gasoline sold at all Legacy Co-op service station outlets that day will be shared among three projects: the Salvation Army, the Churchbridge curling rink and the Kamsack Swimming Pool.

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Employees of Western Recreation and Development, a company that specializes in swimming pools, have only final touches to do before the work at the Kamsack pool is complete, Dayna Guertin, Kamsack’s recreation director, said last week when she and Mayor Nancy Brunt toured the new facility.

The pool’s liner had been repaired and patched a number of times so when a cost estimate for another repair was sought last year, Western Recreation and Development agreed to do that as well as construct the zero entry, which is an expansion of 1,700 square feet, and add a separate toddlers’ pool and spray features, Guertin explained.

“They gave us a large discount because another customer had decided not to proceed with a pool and the company had the time,” Brunt explained.

The company began work in October with the expectation that the pool would be ready for opening in June, she said. Of course, when the pandemic arrived and pools were closed province-wide, there was no need for the company to complete the work prior to June.

Plans are to celebrate the opening of Kamsack’s enhanced public swimming pool next June, she said.

The work at the pool cost a total of $388,000, including about $5,000 for the concrete work and new fencing, Brunt said. Of that cost, $124,690 was raised through the recreation board and from various grants, while the provincial MEEP (Municipal Economic Enhancement Program) contributed $196,750, leaving a balance of $66,560, which is to be raised by the recreation board.

Among the successful fundraising events held by the recreation board to help pay for the project was the February 14 Date Night when more than $15,000 was raised.

The Date Night was a fun night that included live entertainment, a four-course meal and silent auction, Brunt explained. “It was a huge success and people are still talking about it.”

The recreation board, which held a backyard raffle fundraiser in June, is still applying for various grants, Guertin said, adding that she is working on setting up a meeting for the board so that new options may be considered.

“With some members of the board having left the community, and others having resigned, there are seats available on the board,” the mayor said, encouraging persons wishing to contribute to the board’s work to notify Guertin.

“Ideally, every sporting or recreation group should have a representative on the board,” she said. “Also the board would look favourably on a large donor wanting naming rights for the facility.”

“With a goal being pool accessibility for all, regardless of age and ability level, we’d like to purchase at least one wheelchair specially made to go into the water for use by handicapped individuals or seniors,” Guertin said, suggesting that a project to raise about $5,000 for such a chair might be taken on by some community group.