As most know, summer pool staff usually diminishes around time when kids are leaving for college or those still in high school will take that last week off before school starts back in session for the fall year. There are some things that cannot be controlled and finding a date that best works out for everyone is always a challenge.
This year, the City Parks Splash Zone will close for the final time of the summer on Friday, August 18th for the year. The weekend will be used to pack up, clean up and to have the facility inventoried and projects ready for the fall before winterizing it for the remainder of the year. A ton of work goes into the opening and closing of a pool and having enough on staff is essential in making sure that all things are done correctly.
Maintenance supervision Bill Riffle has emphasized some projects around the pool property including giving the mini golf a face lift. Through the 20-plus years, trees have grown, bushes have overpopulated the area and the putting surfaces need a little love. The game plan is to remove some shrubs from the area and replace them with some landscape rocks and mulch to help give more openness to the area. Also, plans to work on the fountains are in the works as well.
Once the pool is closed completely, there are a couple of small projects that will need attention as well as the chemicals inspection. If budgeted correctly, we should be finished with liquid chlorine and most of the other chemicals to keep the pool within the state legal requirements. After a complete drainage of the pool, staff will power wash the area and look for items of concern on the surface of the pool. Final winterization will involve clearing out the pipes and pump areas of water, that if frozen, could cause some headaches post winter.
End of year staff meetings will include a survey on what we do great as a team and what we need to work on in 2024. And it is the staff’s responsibility to find alternative means to improve and make the visit to the pool an enjoyable experience for the customers. Whether it is improving the concessions area or better ways to keep safety in the pool, all topics will be discussed, and an action plan will be implemented.
As a whole, the pool has been a staple in the city for decades. While most private pools have disappeared over the years, the Splash Zone has thrived. And note that revenue streams that come from the park are used for improving the property in the future as you have seen over the years with the addition of the splash pad and other areas over the years.
National Night Out, which was on August 1st, has historically been an evening with close to 1,000 people visiting the pool and is one of the biggest draws of the year and this year was no different. A free evening for Clarksburg to come and enjoy great weather and time in the pool is always a great way to close out the summer.