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Warm-up helps pool reopen

Staff writer

Marion Sports and Aquatics Center reopened its pool Monday after 2½ weeks of being closed because of problems keeping it heated.

School superintendent Lee Leiker said the pool’s original heater — a boiler system dating to when the pool opened in 2007 — failed.

“It had lived its life. It’s done,” Leiker said.

The pool closed Feb. 8.

School board members approved buying a new heater Feb. 13.

“We found a replacement heater at the price we felt was a good price,” Leiker said. “But the delivery time was really drawn out. It will be three months before we can get this replacement heater.”

The district authorized buying a supplemental heater, and between that and solar heating, “we were able to get the water temperature up,” Leiker said.

The pool’s temperature reached 79 degrees Monday. The ideal temperature is 81 to 82 degrees, Leiker said.

The new heater will cost $10,900. The supplemental heater cost $3,600.

“When we get our new heater in, we’re going to use the supplemental heater to heat the kiddie pool,” Leiker said.

That pool, which is outside, never was heated, and the supplemental heater will “allow us to open the kiddie pool earlier and later in the season,” Leiker said.

Solar heating typically is enough to keep the pool at its desired temperature from mid- to late March through October. The pool is open year-round.

Leiker said the district knew the heater was failing and was past the point of repair.

“We still stayed open after that, but once the water got cool enough, we closed it down until we could get that supplemental heat and the solar together to get that temperature back up,” he said.

The pool is available for open swimming from 5:15 a.m. to 8 a.m. Monday through Friday. Water aerobics classes are offered 8 to 9 a.m. weekdays.

Competitive swimmers use the pool from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays. The pool is open again 6 to 7 p.m. weekdays, noon to 4 p.m. Saturdays, and 1 to 5 p.m. Sundays.

Last modified March 1, 2023

 

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