I have to say, the past few weeks have been eerie around the Sunset Pool of late. The eeriness comes from walking through the Sunset Pool many times during a day and not seeing our wonderful patrons and staff working in and around the pool.

On Oct. 20, the pool was shutdown for a five-week closure. As of time of writing, we’re just over a week away from reopening, scheduled for Monday, Nov. 25, and things are looking beautiful.

Anyone that has owned, operated or maintained a pool, hot tub or other body of water knows that it is often a labor of love. Pools represent one of the best forms of exercise for people of all ages. The rejuvenating and magical power of water is like an elixir, a secret potion to help the young gain important lifesaving skills and confidence and the old to feel young.

Having said all that, pools also represent a constant challenge for maintenance and upkeep. Over the last five years, the Sunset Pool has welcomed an average of 200 patrons per day. Since we are open for 362 days per year that means that 72,400 is the number of visits per year.

Those significant numbers represent a good portion of our population and the district loves that we can serve our residents and guests. But those numbers also represent a great deal of strain placed on a lap pool that is 42 years old and a learner pool and hot tub that will soon eclipse their 20-year mark.

That’s one reason why the District has invested significantly over the past three years to improve many aspects of the Sunset Pool bodies of water and some of those have been noticeable and some completely invisible to most of our patrons.

Here’s a short summary of a good chunk of the work that has been accomplished since 2016.

The learner pool, spa and lap pool have all been replastered. Included in those lengthy shutdowns have been upgrades or added underwater lighting in both bodies of water and added drainage for when a heavy bather load occurs.

The controllers in all three bodies of water have been replaced. Those controllers act as regulators and computers for the chemicals needed to maintain public bodies of water.

The spa and learner pool boilers have been replaced. The boilers — obviously — keep those bodies of water at the desired temperature which is 82 degrees for the lap pool, 91 for the learner pool and 101 for the spa.

The entire filtration system for the lap pool has been replaced, allowing the district to keep a cleaner and more efficient body of water.

As if those improvements weren’t enough, the district removed the unusable water slide, added a new chair lift to assist patrons with physical disabilities that prevent them from using the stairs and added the ever-popular program of Boga boards to our swelling aquatics portfolio.

All these changes have been made to continue investing in what is perhaps our greatest asset and the facility that we are most known for: the Sunset Pool.

There’s always more to do and we’ll continue to work to improve the aquatic experience for all who enter our doors. We’re proud to say that the extended closures of 2017 and 2019 are nearly behind us and we look forward to serving everyone in a wonderful and beautiful facility for many years to come.

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