“Isn’t that nice to hear?” asked project manager Scoot Flannery, as the sound of workers was replaced by kids anxious to try out Monticello’s newest attraction.
It is appropriate that kids filled the new pool, as it was the collection of pennies by local students that helped the facility be built. The new $2.2 million facility was constructed by Tri-Hurst Construction but the fund raising was driven by a million penny drive. The penny drive caught the interest of funding agencies and the next thing you know, local kids are saying, “Thanks a million” for the new pool.
Lydia Chadwick, one of the 600 students who were involved in the penny drive, was the winner of a drawing and was the first to jump in the new pool. She was followed quickly by more than 100 local children who have waited anxiously for the new pool to open.
A previous swimming pool, which was built in a similar community-wide fundraising drive in 1959, was demolished over one year ago. See the San Juan Record website, at www.sjrnews.com, for more photos and history of swimming in Monticello.
After nearly a year of construction, more than 300 community members walked through the new facility at an open house on July 10. Door prizes were awarded and the drawing for the first swim was held.
It was a great day for the community and culminated a busy first month for Greg Westfall, the new recreation director for the City of Monticello. A crew of lifeguards have been preparing for the opening and had a busy start.
Flannery reports that there are a few finishing touches on the building and project, including signs, climbing wall, basketball and volleyball nets and landscaping.