Parks officials say the self-sustaining Waveny Pool has generated nearly $300,000 in a capital reserve fund and that if strong bids come back to the town, the popular summer facility could see the money used to install a heater in the pool for the upcoming season as well as to re-line it this fall.
The heater especially is something that users of Waveny Pool say they’d like to see, in addition to more regular cleaning of the bathrooms there and other tweaks, according to members of the Park & Recreation Commission.
A heated pool “would be just a terrific thing,” Chairman Sally Campbell said at the group’s regular meeting, held Wednesday night in the Douglass Room at Lapham Community Center.
Commissioner Jason Milligan, who sits on a Waveny Pool Subcommittee, said more than a dozen regular users of the facility met and brainstormed several ideas that could make the experience there even better.
Recreation Director Steve Benko said plans already are underway to increase the workload for a company that cleans Waveny Pool’s bathrooms so that they’re cleaned twice per day during an 8-week period at the height of summer, raising the contractor’s fee from about $7,000 to $9,800 per season.
Milligan said the users of Waveny Pool also called for improved relations among those who frequent the facility, possibly through a kind of social committee, additional activities, independent fundraising, new chairs and a dedicated website that could facilitate communications, with a message board and event listings.
Benko and the commissioners agreed that the next step on a website would be to gauge whether a volunteer base from among the pool users would be able to oversee and operate it.
Milligan also said that the fee for nonresident users of Waveny Pool—family passes last year were set at $1,000 for out-of-towners, with a maximum of 100 total passes issued—“is a bargain” and could be increased.
Campbell said that the full commission would take up the question of pool fees for the 2016 season at its Feb. 10 meeting.
She commended Milligan and the Waveny Pool regulars for coming up with ideas and solutions for the facility, and said it was especially important to address the lingering issue of the water’s temperature.
“Little kids getting in for their lessons must be freezing,” she said, and with a warmer pool temperature New Canaan would have “a top notch club in town.”