Keosauqua raises funds for outdoor pool
KEOSAUQUA – As summer time approaches, Fairfield isn’t the only regional community without an outdoor pool — Keosauqua is entering its second summer with no outdoor pool.
The Keosauqua community has had the use of a community outdoor pool at its Riverview Country Club for some years, but like Fairfield’s outdoor pool, age and the cost of repairs make it more feasible to build new.
The city, the country club and community foundations are putting heads and funds together with a goal of residents splashing in a new pool by summer 2015.
“Last summer was the first summer without a pool,” said Nasseem Hesler, Keosauqua mayor. “We have two community foundations that are together contributing $450,000 and the remaining amounts will be collected through private fund raising.”
Hesler said a committee, comprised of representatives from Riverview Country Club, the city and the community foundations, has met with pool designers and are still exploring options.
“One thing we know we want for sure is a zero-depth entry,” said Hesler. “We continue to brainstorm about other features and perks to get as much pool as we can for our money. We don’t have a final design so we can’t set a final budget yet to know how much money we need to raise.
“The pool committee meets biweekly and we will continue to meet because we really want to move quickly and have a pool by summer 2015,” she said. “We’ll try to get everything we can within our budget.”
One of the options still being considered is a salt-water pool.
“It’s becoming popular and the way to go,” said Hesler. “It’s supposed to save treatment chemical costs in the long run.”
The committee is working with Pool Tech Midwest Inc. of Cedar Rapids and French-Reneker Associates Inc. of Fairfield.
Jon Finney, secretary of the Community Foundation of Van Buren County, said the foundation has committed $50,000 per year for three years toward a new pool.
The second foundation, known locally as the Roberts Foundation, will have an official announcement May 13 about awarding funds toward the Keosauqua pool, said Finney.
“Van Buren County also has access to the William and Donna Hoaglin Foundation, which benefits both Henry County and Van Buren County,” said Finney.
“The old pool needed repairs, it wasn’t handicap accessible and something underneath the pool, the ground had shifted enough it seems the pool needs to come out and the earth re-compacted,” he said.
“Having no swimming lessons is a great loss for the community,” said Finney. “We have the Des Moines River and lakes and ponds, kids should know how to swim. And the teens that had summer jobs as lifeguards are missing out. We’re looking forward to this project moving forward.”