SAVING THE POOL: Community Input Sought on Chippewa Falls Pool
a year-long community effort in keeping the C.F. pool open now seeks community input on possible amenities
Dedicated Chippewa Falls area residents have been working hard since last spring to rally behind the Bernard F. Willi Outdoor Pool in Chippewa Falls after the city’s Parks and Recreation Director John Jimenez announced the possibility of permanently closing the pool due to repair costs.
When Jimenez shared the repairs could cost roughly $4 million to $6 million, he said a serious look into the pool’s issues needed to occur in order to keep it open.
Katie Crise, a C.F. resident, was struck by the thought of the pool’s closure, realizing how important it was to the community, and especially its families and kids.
Alyssa Van Duyse and Crise headed the formation of a committee focused on crafting a solid, realistic plan to keep the local pool open, Crise started a petition to save the pool that garnered more than 1,300 signatures.
Now, the pool committee is seeking public input through both an online survey and an in-person listening session in hopes of officially nailing down a plan. In a recent press release, the committee says they want to know which amenities are most important to the residents of Chippewa Falls and surrounding communities.
“Since (April 2022), Jimenez and members of the pool committee have been researching other outdoor pools located in Wisconsin to better understand the financial and logistical challenges and how they can be overcome,” the press release states. “Before detailing a plan for the pool space, the committee is asking community members to weigh in on amenities they would like to see in that space.”
The online survey is open from March 27-May 5. “Please keep in mind, the questions below lead to a financial impact,” the survey explains. “The cost increases as more recreation services are offered. Volunteers and parks and recreation employees plan to fundraise and apply for grants once a plan for the pool area is approved.”
The listening session will run from 5-6pm on Monday, April 17, in the basement auditorium of Chippewa Falls City Hall (30 W. Central St., Chippewa Falls).
If interested in getting more involved and/or keeping up with the pool committee, join the Save The Pool Facebook group.