A hot summer brought some record crowds to Marietta's Aquatic Center this year. The popular swimming pool closed for the season Sunday.
"I think it's been a pretty successful season-the weather was much better than last year, and it looks like this might be our best year yet at the aquatic center," said Mike Bishman, owner of Professional Pool Management that has operated the facility for the last two years.
He said there were at least two days this season that the pool drew nearly 1,300 customers, but the average daily attendance probably hovered between 600 and 800.
SAM SHAWVER The Marietta Times
Temperatures in the upper 80s brought hundreds to the Marietta Aquatic Center Sunday, the final day for the facility’s 2012 summer season.
"We had to close a couple of days this year due to the (June 29) wind storm and power outage and one or two other days we closed because of rainy weather," Bishman added.
Still, on the days the aquatic center was open, business was good.
"We've had a pretty good summer. The crowds were a little different each day, but we still had good attendance," said pool manager Stephanie Greene.
Aquatic Center season closes
- The Marietta Aquatic Center closed for the season Sunday.
- Pool management said the 2012 season has been one of the best at the aquatic center.
- Professional Pool Management contracted to operate the facility for $164,946 this year, about $6,000 less than the amount allocated in the 2012 city budget.
- In 2011 the aquatic center finished the year with a profit of nearly $110,000.
Source: Times research.
She said the number of rentals for pool parties was up, too, for the 2012 season, and concession sales have been steady.
Pomeroy resident Julia Rozell was among those who took a last dip at the aquatic center Sunday.
"We came the first day it was open this year, and now we're here on the last day, too," she said. "It was really crowded Memorial Day weekend, but today has been pretty nice."
David and Judy Moore of Cheshire also brought their family to the aquatic center Sunday afternoon.
"We have a city pool, but it's nothing like this," David said.
"This is a nice facility with activities for everyone," Judy added.
Exact revenue figures for the 2012 season haven't been tallied yet, but city officials are expecting a pretty good return.
"The hot weather drew huge crowds, so we know the facility made some money this year," said Councilman Harley Noland, D-at large, who chairs the lands, buildings and parks committee.
He and fellow councilmen plan to take a tour of the aquatic center today.
"The center is nine years old now, and we want to take a look at the wear and tear to see what upgrades and repairs might be needed," Noland said.
He noted that early this year the city ordered extra pumps and other equipment to keep on hand in case of an unexpected breakdown at the pool.
"I would also like to look into improving the food and beverage area to help speed up the service there next year," Noland added.
The aquatic center opened for the 90-day season on Memorial Day weekend.
Two years ago the pool stayed open through Labor Day weekend, but crowds were thin and the extra days didn't generate much additional revenue.
"The reason we've been closing the last weekend of August is because our daily attendance numbers start to drop," Bishman said. "School is starting, and our lifeguards and other staff have to get back to their high school and college classes."