Though the weather was hot and muggy, with a threatening sky, Wednesday, July 8 was a banner day for Rosendalers who have gone too long without a municipal pool in which to cool off. Local officials, distinguished guests and a whole lot of volunteers gathered on the grounds of the Community Center on Route 32 for the official groundbreaking ceremony for replacement of the decommissioned, hopelessly leaky former Town Pool.
Golden shovels in hand, town supervisor Jeanne Walsh and Town Board members past and present pried up clumps of sod on the site where a gleaming new pool is slated to replace the old one in time for the 2016 swimming season. “Any day now, they’ll start construction,” Walsh promised. “We’re very happy to get the project started.”
New York State senator John J. Bonacic, who was instrumental in obtaining a $250,000 Economic Development grant for the project, was on hand to deliver a speech, along with Erin O’Neill, representing another major funder, the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. A choir of children from the Woodcrest Bruderhof sang songs about swimming and “This Land Is Your Land.” “They donated to the Pool Fund and gave us a new roof for the bathhouse,” Walsh said of the Bruderhof community. “They’re always willing to help and pitch in.”
The supervisor has an ever-growing list of pool boosters to thank, including town employees, supportive local businesses and community volunteers like Louisa Duffy, who organized the recent Mermaid Parade fundraiser, and Mary Alroy, who is currently organizing the Rosendale Run scheduled for October 10. “We depend on everybody coming together as a community to make this happen,” said Walsh.
After the ceremony came dessert: “a beautiful cake that looks like the new pool,” in Walsh’s description. But the best is yet to come, when the real thing is finished and ready to fill with water: “We expect it to be open for next summer!”
Donations to the Pool Fund are still needed, and with construction underway, an opportunity now presents itself to honor a loved one by buying a brick for the pool walkways, inscribed with your choice of message, for a contribution of $100. To order a brick, contact Rosendale recreation director Tara Burke at (845) 658-8198. More information about the Rosendale Pool Project can be found on the town’s website at www.townofrosendale.com.