WSCC pool is underutilized

February 20, 2024

WSCC pool is underutilized

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Dear Editor,

I’m a resident of Mason County and recently became aware that WSCC (West Shore Community College) is considering eliminating the swimming pool. I’ve used the pool for lap swim over the last decade and have become concerned over the last few years over the lack of pool availability and program neglect. The idea of closing the pool strikes me as short sighted and not well thought through. I’ve lived in several communities large and small that have active aquatic programs. These programs in many communities are provided by the YMCA, but of course, Ludington does not have a YMCA. Looking nearby at both the Manistee pool the Cadillac YMCA, these aquatic programs includes:

  • Lap Swim
  • Dive Clinic
  • Lifeguard Training
  • WSI Training
  • Masters Swim
  • Swim Lessons
  • Private Swim Lessons
  • Youth Swim Team
  • AOA Water Exercise
  • Aqua Aerobics – Arthritis – Prenatal
  • 100 Mile Swim Club

Aquatic programs are used by all ages – from birth to 100. I see that Mason County has 29,000 residents – also, the WSCC pool can also serve adjacent counties. A well run aquatic program would potentially serve more users than all the other recreational facilities at WSCC. This is absolutely not about providing a pool for a few senior citizens in Ludington. The pool today is totally underutilized and it’s not an inviting atmosphere. It’s like walking into a morgue – dimly lit – no music – few people. It’s my observation that there is currently no aquatic program management and it’s totally neglected. The issue of lack of lifeguards is real and needs to be solved, but this is a short term issue that can be solved. Also, I’m not advocating that WSCC become a YMCA. The college and community should be looking for unique long term programs benefiting both WSCC students/faculty and the taxpaying community.

While I’m not knowledgeable about WSCC’s charter for providing community recreational facilities or funding, it stands to reason that Mason County has a working pool now and it makes sense for stakeholders to work together to look for ideas to fund it, fix it, and use it before we raze the pool. Most community colleges have recreational facilities including a swimming pool which is shared with the community supporting the school. This idea is not something out of the norm.


Marty Byle

Sherman Township

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