The YMCA will host a swimming program

HORNELL – After a COVID-induced disruption in 2020, the City of Hornell swimming pool reopens this summer under new management.

The town of Hornell and the Family from the Hornell YMCA area have reached an agreement for the upcoming swimming season which will equal increased aquatic opportunities for local residents.

The deal was approved at this week’s Common Council meeting, placing the city’s pool at James Street Veteran’s Memorial Park under the leadership of the YMCA in 2021. Talks were underway before the COVID-19 pandemic did not close the city’s summer programs last year.

“I think it will be a benefit to the community, as the YMCA is better equipped to run a pool and deliver things that the city hasn’t been able to do in the past, in terms of programming and events. more fun activities, ”said Mayor John Buckley. . “We operated the pool for freestyle swimming. We haven’t really taken it to that next level. This is where I feel like the YMCA can really take the ball and run with it.

The City of Hornell Public Pool at James Street Veterans Memorial Park will operate under the direction of the YMCA this summer with expanded swimming programs.

The agreement covers June 1 to September 5. The city will pay the YMCA a fee of $ 8 per hour of supervision during public swimming, while the YMCA will cover 100% of lifeguard staff expenses during non-public swimming periods. The YMCA will host special programming from 10 a.m. to noon on weekdays.

The pool will still be open from 12:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. for general swimming, but the YMCA will use the morning hours for specialized programs.

“The strength of the YMCA is in the programming, and the city has an excellent resource in the facilities and the pool,” said YMCA CEO Kristoph Kocan. “Where we think we can improve this resource is to come and offer YMCA programs for youth, young adults, seniors and all ages. I think it’s an underutilized resource because the city doesn’t have any program directors or aquatic directors.

Kristoph kocan

YMCA Associate General Manager Nick Kowtun and Director of Water Sports Seth Gill will oversee the outdoor swimming pool program in the park. The city remains responsible for the facilities, grounds, pool chemicals and all necessary capital work, while the YMCA handles staffing.

User fees for the 2021 season are 50 cents per person for residents of Hornell and $ 1 per person for non-residents. YMCA members do not have to pay an admission fee. Fees for YMCA programs will vary depending on the program, with the YMCA setting the rates and also reserving the right to negotiate rates with entities that bring large groups to the pool. The YMCA will collect and retain all charges generated by public swimming and programming.

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The YMCA hopes its efforts will expand access to the public swimming pool.

“We want to make it more of a place where kids and the community want to go, instead of just swimming outdoors,” Kocan said. “Were excited.”

The deal for this summer will be reviewed at the end of the season, with the possibility that the arrangement will continue if the YMCA and the city find it mutually beneficial.

“There’s always going to be a learning curve, but I think it’s a really great opportunity to partner with the Y and take it somewhere that we couldn’t do on our own,” Buckley said. “We have a great facility. The better we can use it, the better for everyone. ”

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A smooth pool opening is tentatively scheduled for June 26, with city summer programs starting Monday June 28 for the playgrounds at Veteran’s Park, Bryant School, Columbian School, Stephens Street, Hornell High School and Madison Avenue.

Chris Potter can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @ ChrisPotter413. To get unlimited access to the latest news, please subscribe or activate your digital account today.

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