The newly refurbished Lehighton Area Pool ended its second season being open after having been closed for five summers.
This summer the pool had exceptional attendance. More than 1,000 season tickets were sold. This was a huge increase over the first season.
Beyond those with season tickets, a record number of people enjoyed the pool and paid for daily admission as well. It was a hot summer and many people enjoyed the social and physical benefits of having a community pool.
Lehighton Pool Pals spokesman Mark Hoffman said, "During these hard economic times, the pool provided employment to 22 young adults as lifeguards. The pool also provided employment to eight other staff members utilizing them in the refreshment stand and as general help."
He said that thanks to the efforts of the Lehighton Area Pool Pals and those who supported their 2009 Halloween Dance fundraiser, the Lehighton swimming pool provided a record number of local children with free swimming lessons this year.
Pool manager, Tom Evans, stated that 250 children took advantage of the free swimming lessons.
To support the record turnout, swimming lessons had to be offered during the day and in the evening to accommodate that many children.
There were many events held at the pool this summer. The swimming pool is becoming the community drawing card for many organizations.
Lehighton Area School District held a safety event and free swim for all preschool and school age children in June. This event was coordinated by Susan Howland and was very successful. Many agencies were represented and people received a variety of information.
The community grove held free weekly swim days for children in its summer recreation program. The Lehighton Library held a special day at the pool (Splash at the Pool) for all who participated in its summer reading program.
The fireman's training participants enjoyed a cool dip in the pool after they had practice several evenings. They also held scuba certification at the pool in the deep end.
The Lehighton Senior citizen's program held its annual picnic at the swimming pool. There were water aerobics and Zumba lessons offered to encourage physical fitness.
There was a Hawaiian Luau held by the Lehighton Pool Pals.
There were nights when D.J. Layne Roberts and Monroe Berger entertained everyone by spinning records and encouraging group participation in songs such as YMCA.
The swimming pool was the center of attention when the Lehighton Downtown Initiative Group set off fireworks at its Stay at Home July 4 celebration.
"It was such a feel good community sense to see local families and children sit on the grassy areas of the pool and watch the fireworks overhead," said Hoffman. "They were enjoyed by all who attended."
Hoffman said that everyone had a good time at the pool this summer.
The Lehighton Area Pool Pals dedicated a pool pavilion that people can rent out for special parties and events. Hoffman said that it was very successful this past summer with many special events held there.
Next year the pool manager hopes to have a sand volleyball court installed and is trying to initiate a volleyball league at the pool. There are also hopes to start a Swim Clinic which will hopefully evolve into a swim team.
Next year it is proposed to extend the swimming pool hours in the months of June and July-Monday through Friday until 8 p.m.
Lehighton Pool Pals will be holding its second annual Halloween dance to support and fund free swimming lessons for all the local children in 2011 on Saturday, Oct. 30. This year's event will be at Jim Thorpe Memorial Hall and the band "Becky and the Beasts" will perform. There will also be a magician. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and the band plays from 7 to 11 p.m. Tickets are available by contacting Mark Hoffman at (610) 377-5275.