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Vernon swim club wades into new pool debate

Vernon Kokanee Swim Club favour building a new 50-metre facility at the Kin Race Track site
The Vernon Kokanee Swim Club has waded into the Active Living Centre debate, calling for the new facility to be built and encouraging eligible voters to get out and cast their ballot on the Oct. 15 borrowing referendum. (File photo)

Vernon’s swim club for youth has dived into the Active Living Centre debate.

Eligible voters in the City of Vernon will vote on a borrowing of funds referendum Saturday, Oct. 15, to help construct a new Active Living Centre – including new swimming pool – at the former Kin Race Track site.

The Vernon Kokanee Swim Club quotes the legendary baseball movie Field of Dreams – based on the book Shoeless Joe written by late Lower Mainland resident W.P. Kinsella: “Build it, and they will come.”

“We encourage residents to actively participate and vote,” said Kokanee head coach Jason Brockman in a letter to the Morning Star.

The Kokanee club is in its 55th season of operation, and over the past 25 years has put a concerted effort into fundraising and bringing to the public’s attention the value and benefit of a new facility when the opportunity has presented itself.

Current club head assistant coach Steven Vandermeulen – himself a former Kokanee and 1988 Canadian Olympian in Seoul – recalls in 1990, the swim club did a fundraiser where you purchased a bottle of pool water from a Lavington bottling company, then you could pour it into a new pool when it was built.

In 2018, the opportunity was again brought forward to the community to move forward with plans to build a new 25-metre pool which was put on hold.

“Strike two,” said Brockman over both failed opportunities.

Plans call for a 50-metre Olympic-size pool that Brockman says would fulfill the required needs of the community “now and for future generations of athletes.”

“A 50-metre pool would also provide Vernon the opportunity to host various types of aquatic events that would thousands of athletes and their families from within our province and nation,” he said.

Brockman credited the city with “doing its homework and taking the time for us to hit a home run by voting yes to building a new carbon footprint friendly Active Living Centre.”

“Our portion of monetary investment as members of the community has been analyzed and only comes to a mere $25 a month per family,” he said. “How about this time we decide to hit a home run and build this centre and show those that will come the beauty that Vernon has to offer?”

READ MORE: Vernon Aquatic Centre no longer up to snuff

READ MORE: Vernon Kokanee Swim Club founder remembered as ‘likeable guy’

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Roger Knox

About the Author: Roger Knox

I am a journalist with more than 30 years of experience in the industry. I started my career in radio and have spent the last 21 years working with Black Press Media.
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