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New pool area dedicated

  • TERRY AHNER/TIMES NEWS This autumn blaze maple tree is one of eight of its kind that has been added to the new Palmerton Memorial Pool area. Pictured behind it is the new volleyball court.
    TERRY AHNER/TIMES NEWS This autumn blaze maple tree is one of eight of its kind that has been added to the new Palmerton Memorial Pool area. Pictured behind it is the new volleyball court.
Published July 31. 2012 05:01PM

A community treasure in Palmerton known for its picturesque look may be even more aesthetically pleasing than ever before.

The supporters who helped make the impressive transformation complete at the Palmerton Memorial Pool attended a dedication of the new pool area on Sunday.

Complete with eight autumn blaze maple trees, a refurbished pavilion, and new volleyball court, the new pool area is a welcome addition to the facility.

Larry Arner, general manager, Palmerton Memorial Park Association, said the purpose of the day was to acknowledge Old-timers Day, the 65th anniversary of the pool, and to dedicate the new pool area, which took the past two years to complete.

The facility, Arner said, was built from 1946-47, and placed into operation on July 4, 1947, as a living memorial to the veterans of World War I and World War II, Arner said. Since then, it serves as a memorial to all veterans who have, and who are still serving our country and community, he said.

"Sixty five years old, and look at her today," Arner said of the pool. "A gem of our community."

Not much had changed at the pool until 1991, when Arner said the baby pool was replaced and enlarged for toddlers. The filtering system was also replaced at that time, he said.

Since then, Arner said they have continued to make changes and improve the park. In 2009, a new water slide was added, he said.

In 2010, he said the board saw that the small pavilion was not being utilized. On top of that, the volleyball court was unsafe and caused some problems, said Arner, who added that there was also a need for more shaded area.

As a result, the board, Arner said, took on the project and decided to enclose the pavilion inside the pool and put in a new volleyball court. However, attempts to save trees during construction were unsuccessful, he said.

Arner said the pavilion was originally built with the help of the Palmerton Concourse Club, which provided the funds, along with numerous volunteers. It was completely refurbished with a new concrete floor, electric service, roof and vinyl soffit, he said.

In addition, eight autumn blaze maple trees were sponsored and planted, top soil was brought in, and grass planted, Arner said.

"This project would not have happened without the help of certain individuals and groups," he said. "At this time, I would like to introduce to you those who made it possible."

Arner then mentioned the Concourse Club of Palmerton, represented by member Joann Kercsmar; the Horsehead Community Development Fund, represented by Nan Campton; the Howard Witham Bequest, and a former PMPA board member for 44 years, whose daughters, Gail and Joyce could not be in attendance; the Erma Wagner Bequest, and a former board member for over 25 years, who was represented by her son, Earl Wagner, grandson Bart and great grandson, Blaise; Pool Pals of Palmerton Memorial Park, represented by Jane Stroup and Susie Arner, as well as many volunteers; and the Free Masons Lodge #621 of Lehighton, represented by Duane Dellecker.

From there, Arner introduced the families who sponsored the new trees: the Shea Family, of Shea's Hardware; the Bray Family, in memory of Marvin W. Bray; the Wargo Family, in memory of Tom Wargo; the Bollinger Family, in memory of Lee Bollinger; the Ashman Family, in memory of George W. Ashman Sr., a member of the first PMPA board of directors; the Brown Family, in memory of Norman and Vera Brown; the Biege Family; and the Lutz & Kaslik Family, in memory of Alex and Pauline Kaslik.

"On behalf of the board of directors and myself, we thank all who have contributed in some way or another to make this project happen," Arner said. "Thank you, and enjoy the rest of your day here at the PMPA Resort."

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