A pool party for the ages

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Fête for Grosvenor Outdoor Pool's 50th

There will be a lot of happy dippers come Tuesday when the Grosvenor Outdoor Pool celebrates its 50th anniversary. The city is dropping the price of admission to about what it cost in 1967.

For $1.50 people can join in the party at St. Albert’s first and only outdoor aquatic facility. The Grosvenor Pool was built as part of the country’s centennial celebration and has always enjoyed good crowds, especially on the hot days.

“It actually sees quite a lot of usage, year over year. So 50 years in, we’re not seeing any decrease,” said St. Albert Recreation’s aquatics services manager Shaun Percival.

Now, the newly relined pool located at 1 Grenfell Ave. will host all of the festive splashers and wave-crashers for a day of fun to mark the occasion.

There will be free face-painting and supervised water games from 1 to 4 p.m. and from 6 to 9 p.m. Attendees can also enjoy free cupcakes as well as free hot dogs and ice cream while they last, of course. Those will come courtesy of the Splash Pad Café, the facility’s concession stand.

“This is something that deserves a celebration. This is a very, very old pool. Think of a pool in dog years. It’s 50 years old but it gets the usage that probably takes it up to being around 75 or 80 years old. It deserves notice and the community has been overwhelming in its support of Grosvenor Pool over the years.”

The pool recently received a new marcite liner in its basin, and the weather-related delay in its installation caused the reopening to be delayed three weeks. “Many people were anxiously awaiting it. Kids would be outside hoping that ‘today would be the day.’ We see all the time people desperately wanting to get in there and enjoy it.”

Percival expects the place to be packed on Tuesday. You can almost hear the screaming kids already.

“We’re hoping that you can hear it down the street,” he joked.

Just in case the weather is unfavourable enough for the party to proceed on Tuesday, the city has set Wednesday as its solid backup date for the fête.

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Scott Hayes

Scott Hayes joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2008. Scott writes about the arts, entertainment, movies, culture, community groups, and charities. He also writes general news, features, columns and profiles on people.