Racine area residents will have a new place to keep cool when the SC Johnson Community Aquatic Center opens on Saturday in Pritchard Park.
SC Johnson funded the $6.5 million project. A ribbon-cutting ceremony, which actually turned into a water dunking as officials pulled a rope connected to a large bucket of water onto a number of children, was held Wednesday.
Fisk Johnson, Chairman and CEO of SC Johnson, said the facility will provide a “safe and enjoyable” place for families.
“SC Johnson has always been committed to helping improve lives where we live and work, and today’s celebration is another milestone in that effort,” he said.
U.S. Olympic swimmer and gold medalist Cullen Jones attended the celebration. He shared a story about how he nearly drowned when he was 5-years-old. But his family enrolled him in swimming lessons and he eventually became a four-time Olympic medalist in swimming.
“Competence around water doesn’t always come naturally,” Jones said. “But with swim lessons and a safe pool to practice in, anyone can become a more confident swimmer. The new SC Johnson Community Aquatic Center will provide Racine-area youth a place where they can hone their swimming skills and embrace safety around water.”
The Racine Family YMCA will manage the aquatic center, which will also offer swim lessons and water safety education programs.
The center includes 14,000 total square feet of water surface, an 8-lane lap pool, an activity pool, large waterslides, a water play structure with a water spray feature, rope course, zero-depth pool for young children, and a 4,800 square foot pool building with changing rooms. The concession stand will be operated by the Racine Young Leaders Academy.
“Today’s opening of the SC Johnson Community Aquatic Center marks a dream realized,” said Delagrave. “This facility will enhance the quality of life in the area, provide healthy and safe recreational activities for families, and cement Pritchard Park as a destination for Racine County residents.”
If you go
What: SC Johnson Community Aquatic Center opening day
When: Open swim begins at 1 p.m., June 2. Regular season hours will begin when area schools are anticipated to end for the summer, around June 14.
Where: Pritchard Park, 2800 Ohio St.
How much: Information about membership, daily fees, hours of operation and aquatic programs can be found online at www.ymcaracine.org.
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Also, if you are looking for summer fun, check out Kraut Music Fest, which is set for June 8, 9, and 10.