More family-friendly changes for pool

ALPENA – There are a lot of changes taking place at Plaza Pool. Ameresco is wrapping up its energy efficient improvements to the pool and a tweak in the scheduling will offer families another event to enjoy each weekend. As winter approaches it appears the pool is ready for a busy season.

Director Krista Morrow said the pool has been busy, even as the weather has been warm. She said there have been a lot of first-time users and advertising efforts coupled with word of mouth sharing has boosted the amount of people visiting the pool.

“We are continually on a daily basis getting new patrons,” Morrow said. “We have been doing well with our basic programming and there have been a lot of friends getting together and coming for a swim. Our numbers are way up for almost everything.”

There is one area where the attendance numbers are down. Use of the pool’s “fun run,” an inflatable obstacle course with a water slide at the end of it. Morrow said the course was open only one day a week in the past and now will be available for use on Friday, Saturday and Sunday at specific times. Previously some children would not be allowed to take part if they couldn’t prove they were capable swimmers. People were required to swim the length of the pool before being allowed on the inflatable course. Morrow said there were many people who wanted to use it, but weren’t good enough swimmers, so a compromise was reached.

“We are still going to have people swim the length of the pool, but if they can’t they will now have the option of wearing a life jacket and getting on the course,” Morrow said. “This will allow parents or older sibling a chance to take the younger children and do the obstacle course and go down the slide.”

The pool will have the course set up on Fridays from 7-9 p.m., Saturday from 2-4 p.m. and Sunday from 4-5 p.m. Morrow said there will be two lifeguards working while the inflatable toy is up. She said prices vary according to time and day, so people should go to for prices.

Morrow said the inflatable obstacle course and the pool are available for private parties. She said for $199 people can use the pool for two hours, as well get two large pizzas. Morrow said parties are scheduled according to pool availability.

Morrow said the work being done to the facility to make it more energy efficient is well on its way. Morrow said the improvements being installed will make it more pleasant for swimmers, but more importantly cut down power bill expenses.

They put an all new heating unit in, it is on the roof, versus inside the building and we have a brand new boiler,” Morrow said. “We haven’t had an air exchanger and it would always be so humid in here. You can see the humidity dripping down the walls and it has ruined our pictures and makes it uncomfortable. The air exchanger will help keep the condensation down.

Steve Schulwitz can be reached via email at or by phone at 358-5689. Follow Steve on Twitter ss_alpenanews. Read his blog, Upon Further Review … at