Indoor aquatic facilities are a staple in many communities that I have lived in and visited.
The existence of an indoor pool sways me to whether or not I will visit a community.
Before moving to Golden, I just assumed a community of this size would have one.
Now, when we head out of town, we usually go to communities that have indoor pools, to take a soak and use the hot tub. Otherwise, we book hotels that have one, even though they can be quite small, over crowded, and usually don’t have staff to keep an eye on safety.
Aquatic centres are an important part of travelling at any time in the year. In the summertime, if you’re stuck in the city and unable to get out to the lake, or surrounded by glacial lakes, it’s a good place to cool off. In the winter it is nice to gently work your leg muscles in the pool, or warm up in the hot tub after a cold day of skiing.
Many centres feature fun additions like basketball hoops, or floaties for kids to play with. They host drop in aquafit classes, and an array of other activities for people of all ages.
Right now, we are pouring money into the inconsistent hotels that will allow people from town to use their facilities when the outdoor pool is closed, or if we want to go to the hot tub.
Having an indoor pool would attract more visitors to our community throughout the entire year.
Hopefully with the Columbia Shuswap Regional District’s pool feasibility study, it will show that people in town value having an indoor facility, and it will take into account all of the travellers who would like to stop for a nice dip.
Children and adults in our town could enjoy swimming lessons all year round. The swim club could have a longer season if they wanted, and the athletes would have more time to practise in the off season.
The times we are able to go to the pool are severely limited by it’s short season, which is only just over 100 days each year, and it can be affected by weather, which is unpredictable at times.
Last year, wildfires made it hard to be outdoors and active, and with an indoor facility, nobody would have had to worry about air quality when going to the pool.
This doesn’t mean that we have to build a new facility that will cost taxpayers an arm and a leg to build. The feasibility study should show that there might be some options in possibly creating a dome, or some kind of enclosure around the existing facility. The pool we have now is aging, and we will have to consider its future eventually, and we could start by thinking forward about creating an indoor centre for everyone to enjoy.