The Palestine Herald, Palestine, Texas

Local Scene

June 27, 2014

Diving in! Summer swim season in full swing

PALESTINE — Bad weather, be gone!

Summer is upon us, and all we really want to do while school is out and the sun burns bright is jump as high as we can and into the chlorinated depths below.

This seemed to be the sentiment, at least, of local little residents who graced the City of Palestine's swimming pool at the Steven Bennett Park Aquatic Center Thursday, now in full swing with the summer swim season.

Like natural-born fishes, throngs of children could be seen having a time as they splashed, thrashed and even twirled through the waves caused by human activity at the YMCA swimming pool.

A few older fishes were there too — most finding comfort in the surrounding lounge chairs — reading books, watching the younger fishes, or conjuring their tan in moments when the sun would actually peek out behind Thursday's afternoon clouds.

Matthew Cotton, a lifeguard at the center, said the pool has had a good summer so far, despite a couple of heavy clouds.

“The weather has been crazy the past several weeks, so when it's not raining, thundering, and we're closed, we stay pretty busy,” Cotton said, a point also noted by Aquatics Director Wade Hobbs.

“We've had a lot of bad weather so far this summer, so a lot of times we've had to be closed,” Hobbs said, “but it's nice when it's not hot, and it's been a good group of kids.”

Thanks to a partnership between the City of Palestine and the local YMCA, the city offers free pool passes to anyone living within the city limits. Residents can pick up their free swimming pool pass from 9 a.m. to noon, or from 2 to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday in the Water Department at City Hall, located at 504 N. Queen St. A valid driver’s license will be required, and water bills must be in current status.

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