As the pink mermaid buoy and blue pool noodles are ready to go on Saturday, 6-year-old Faith Rockhart proudly talks about how good she is.
However, as her mom explained, the girl’s previous swimming attempt was only in her tub or backyard children’s pool.
On Saturday, Rockhart was excited to take her first plunge to the real pool: Reading’s recently reconstructed Schlegel Park Pool reopened this weekend after two seasons of closure.
Schlegel Park is with Reading $ 1.4 million refurbishment.. It was completely resurfaced and all machines including its pump and drainage system were replaced.
According to city officials, the pool was built in 1968 and was simply worn out at the age of 54, even before the system was damaged by floods and mud a few years ago. The pool was built on the floodplain, but new trenches should alleviate the problem, officials said.
After the pool opened at noon on Saturday, it was a slow start in terms of attendees. This was due to the occasional rain and clouds by Matthew Rubas, the overseer of urban recreation.
He expected turnout on Sunday and Monday to be much higher.
However, Rockhart was happy that she came. She quickly walked comfortably around the 3-foot section and didn’t mind the water was still a bit chilly.
“This is fun,” she said repeatedly.
Her dad, Dwayne Rockhart. I’m glad they came.
“It’s a great pool,” he said. “It’s big and the water is really clean.”
Faith’s mother, Amanda Flicker, thanked the pool for its reopening and said that not only was her daughter nowhere else to swim in Reading, but she had been partially inactive for the past two years. In a pandemic.
“We were crazy,” she said.
Pool guards were also enthusiastic about reopening the pool and were convinced that the water would warm up soon.
They included Ben Villarreal and Samantha Moser, veteran lifeguards at Schlegel Park.
“I’m very happy to be back,” Moser said. “It’s a great place, especially for kids who may want to escape what’s happening at home. It’s a safe place for them.”
According to Villarreal, the guards there usually provide rescue several times each summer. Children usually get caught up in the moment and forget about their lack of swimming skills. But he said the lifeguard is carrying out that mission.
He was also pleased that Schlegel Park’s summer camp returned to the pool after spending the last two summers elsewhere.
Christopher Sanchez, 17, is his first year as a lifeguard at Schlegel, but spent three summers swimming and camping as a child.
He remembers the pool as a peaceful place for children to get along and behave well, and he is grateful to be working there now.
“It’s a great place,” he said.
Reading’s refurbished Schlegel Park pool reopens
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