Attendees: Becky Johnson, Maura Van Ness, Rose Hollis, Peggy Loomis, Pam Bowling, Kim Lisk, Larry Rhule, Lin McBride, Carroll Whipple, Dawn Saunders
We started with introductions and individual visions for the project:
Rose Hollis stated she is new to the community and finds this a good community project to work on.
Maura Van Ness has been inspired by doing water therapy and wants to bring this to the valley.
Kim Lisk worked diligently on a past community pool facility project known as the Eastman Rush-Foundation and then Valley Recreation Association Board and currently teaches private swimming lessons in her own backyard pool. She would like to see a pool in the valley and recognizes the challenges of not enough community participation.
Pam Bowling teaches water aerobics and would like to see a local pool for the needs of our community.
Lin McBride recognizes the need for a community gathering place and sees this as an opportunity to fill that need.
Larry Rhule (director of the Si View municipal parks commercial pools) is very knowledgeable about pools and has a lot of information to offer.
Peg Loomis is also interested in seeing this project as an opportunity to create a community gathering place.
Rose gave a summary review of past meetings:
Maura and Rose gave a summary of actions they have taken since the last
Official Interim Name: Snoqualmie Valley Aquatic Center Interest Group
E-mail address SnoValleyAquatics@cablespeed.com,
P.O. Box 866 Duvall, WA,
Kathryn Thompson has volunteered to design and set up the website which is underway:
http://www.snoqualmievalleyaquatic.org (under construction)
There was a short discussion about a feasibility study done in the late ‘90s. There apparently was one done which had negative results, but much has changed including the major change of a sewer system in Carnation, and a population boom all over the valley. Another feasibility study for a pool facility is now necessary for needs assessment and community interest.
Maura and Rose had a meeting with Chuck McWilliams, V.P. of Lake Washington Vo-tech. A new campus is schedule to be built east of Safeway in about 5 years. He suggested talking with the developer CAM WEST, who will be donating the land for the college. Perhaps the developer would be open to including a pool site in the area of the housing development which may go up before the college is built.
Thrive Fitness is planning to build a new facility in the area along Hwy 203 just south of Copper Hill. Jeff Wolf, one of the owners and a member of the Duvall Planning Commission, is willing to explore the possibility of sharing/selling a piece of their property for an Aquatic Center.
The school district is planning to build a new Jr. High. This site may be worth looking into.
The King County Library is planning a new building for Duvall and is looking for partner to share a site.
More research must be done to determine how large a site will be needed for an Aquatic Center. The group will continue to explore all possibilities for site location.
Maura and Rose had a meeting with Michael Dilley who is a planning director for the Red Cross and has many years of professional experience working for Aquatic facilities Operations/Facility Management as well as Administrative/Program Management. He was able to offer many suggestions on how to design a facility that would be flexible enough to accommodate diverse aquatic programs, from competitive swimming to leisure time family activities. He was adamant that the traditional “rectangular pool” would not be self supporting in the long or the short run because of the programming limitations of that design. He offered a very interesting alternate design that has proven successful: A pool with a “Zero Entry”, fan shaped area at one end, with a deep water section at the other end for lap swimming lanes, aerobics classes, and even a slide. Successful facilities also have a second, much warmer, therapy pool with wheel chair access, and even a third small, very shallow, splash pool for toddlers. He was also very knowledgeable about recent innovations in pool design for energy efficient water filtration and heating systems, and air exchange (humidity control). He also explained how the Red Cross is able to provide training in water safety programs and soon may also be able to offer training for pool operations management.
Michael has a private consulting firm and would be willing (for a fee) to do a presentation to further demonstrate and explain of the above pool design strategies to a large group.
Avenues for Support
Lin brought up the idea of contacting Cathy Lambert (King County Council representative). Lin stated that she would e-mail her.
Maura and Rose met with Sharon Simas, Chairperson for SPLASH (swimming pools for leisure active sports and health). Their role in our area is described as: to encourage Eastside pools. According to Maura, they are willing to umbrella us in (501C3 status) so we could begin using a non-profit status.
The idea was raised that finding groups to use the pool on off hours would be helpful, i.e.: Kayakers are willing to rent pools to practice during non peak, late night hours. Competitive swim teams in the area may also be interested in using the pool for workouts during non-peak hours.
Eastman Rush Endowment Update
Kim Lisk recovered boxes of files from the church. Maura condensed this material to pertinent information. There have been conversations with a lawyer (Bill Holloway). Evidently, the foundation hired a consultant to develop a proposal (Don Cary), and the feeling was that the money spent on the proposal was mismanaged. There was over $100,000 raised; most was spent on the proposal. When the VRA was dissolved, a disputed amount ($15,000 to $22,000) was donated to the YMCA, and the Eastman Rush Endowment Fund was created. Maura and Rose discussed their interactions with Peter Morris (the group VP for Seattle Area YMCAs). The interest earnings on this money is to be used for partial scholarships for Snoqualmie Valley swimmers. The people who have attempted to use this money for scholarships have apparently been unsuccessful. Prior to the meeting, a discussion occurred about the Eastman Rush funds. The question came up: Why can’t the Eastman Rush scholarship money be used for lessons at the 2 local pools which are giving public lessons?
Maura and Rose plan to hear further next week from Peter Morris in an effort to track down the details. A conversation ensued about the importance of getting this information clear and concise before we present it to the public. It was agreed that continued efforts would be made to clarify the process for applying for swimming lesson scholarships, and if possible to obtain documentation that tracks the history of the creation of the Eastman Rush Endowment and an accounting of the use of those funds by valley residents.
Maura suggested that the next meeting could focus on creating a survey.
It was suggested that order of projects should be:
more organized written survey
create a report/proposal
Rose stated that she would reach some those who expressed interest at the last meeting in helping with the survey.
It was suggested that the phone survey would be more organized if everyone called from one place. The Coldwell Banker Bain Real Estate office has allowed people to use their phones for calling in the past and would possibly be an option.
We need people to get involved and sign to work as committees: this was emphasized by Rose and Larry.
Larry suggested that when we get the point that we are ready to do fundraising, it would be helpful to approach the really wealthy people in the area to solicit donations.
At some point it would be a good idea to have do a press release and get a booth at the Carnation 4th of July event and Duvall Days.
Larry said it would be beneficial to reach out to local private swim teams (which are very well-funded organizations.) Wave Aquatics was mentioned. This apparently involves apx. 300 students. Larry stated that they have difficulty getting enough water time.
Carroll said she will submit a letter to the editor in the River Current about the Interest group and importance of swim instruction for valley residents.
A small donation for room use was collected.