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From Zumba to the high dive: Colfax Pool is fun in the sun

Adult swim session now offered from 8 to 9 p.m. Tuesdays, Thursdays

Published: Wednesday, July 12, 2017 9:05 a.m. CDT • Updated: Wednesday, July 12, 2017 9:27 a.m. CDT
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(Anthony Victor Reyes/Jasper County Tribune)
Swimmers wait for their turn to show off their swimming skills July 5 at Colfax Pool during their swim lesson. The last swim lesson session began July 10.
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(Anthony Victor Reyes/Jasper County Tribune)
Class patrons show off their dancing skills July 5 at Colfax Pool during the facility's Zumba workout session. Admission costs $3.
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(Anthony Victor Reyes/Jasper County Tribune)
Colfax Pool swim instructors help their students get comfortable in the water July 5. The instructors offer private lessons, for students who would like more individualized instruction.

COLFAX – Since opening in the late 1970s, Jasper County has been cooling off in the Colfax pool. From jumping off the high dive to soaking up the sun poolside, the pool has become a summer tradition for many families.

“There is a lot of fun stuff you can do,” 5-year-old Eli Osterhaus said. “I like that I can jump off the diving board. It is so fun.”

To accomodate all the members of the community, Colfax pool decided to offer a variety of activities this summer to help kids and adults beat the heat.

New this year, the family pool decided to extend their hours to 9 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays for a one-hour, adult swim workout session.

“It is a time for people 18 and older to come in and swim laps,” pool manager Jim Earles said. “This session basically gets the kids out of the way... It is more of a private, ‘Hey I’m here to exercise’ workout. You don’t have to worry about someone jumping in and hitting you.”

The complete adult swim workout session costs $3 per swimmer. This includes access to lap swimming, a 30-minute swim aerobics guided workout and a 30-minute water Zumba class. The aeorbics class begins at 8 p.m. and Zumba starts at 8:30 p.m.

“By Facebook and word of mouth, I had 34 people show up for the first night of water aerobics and 29 the next,” Earles said. “This is something we just started a few weeks ago. It has been getting pretty good turnout from the public so far.”

The program will be offered weekdays from 8 to 9 p.m. until August, when the pool closes for the season.

Like in years past, Colfax pool has been offering two-week swimming lessons during its summer session for water enthusiasts ages 3 and up. This year, the program offered five levels – pre-kindergarten, beginners, advanced beginners, intermediate and swimmer.

“It is open to any age really, if the kid is comfortable with the younger kids,” Earles said. “If they never had swim lessons, do we really want to start them at the basic beginners? If we do, we will test them the first day then bump them up to the advanced beginners... Some kids it comes naturally. Some kids it just takes a little more work and practice.”

The pool manager said the pool decided to continue lessons to teach people an extremely important life skill, while also carrying over a tradition that has been held at the nearly 40-year-old pool for years.

“We have been offering swim lessons since my kids were young,” Earles said. “One of my daughters would stand by the pool and her knees would shake. She didn’t want to jump in even in the shallow end. Now she is a lifeguard.”

The classes, which cost $30 per student, are offered daily during the weekday during two 45-minute sessions, 11 a.m. and noon. The pool manager said by offering two time frames and variety of different levels, they are able to keep their class sizes to around 10 kids, allowing more individualized instruction.

“They’ve got lots of instructors and lots of help,” Owen’s mother, Ashley Osterhaus said. “Our kids have no fear of water, they will just jump in wherever... Our kids came in not knowing how to swim at all and now they are very good.”

The last swimming lesson program session began July 10 and will run through July 21. The pool ran two session prior.

“Our guards also do private lessons, one-on-one with kids,” Earles said. “They can pick a time between the guard and the parent, and they will get some one-on-one. Usually it is about 30 minutes a day.”

The facility is also home to a baby pool for parents interested in exposing their kids to the water at a younger age. Admission to use this pool is free.

“Most pools aren’t here to make money. It is here for the community, such as parks and libraries,” Earles said. “It is just important to have this outlet for kids, especially during the summer months.”

Colfax pool is open from 1 to 8 p.m. weekdays at 100 S. League Road, with the adult swim program continuing 8 to 9 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. Admission costs $4.50 for adults, $3 for kids ages 4 through 17 and free for children under 3 years old. The last week day the pool will be opened is Aug. 22, then it will be open weekends until Aug. 27.

Season passes, which can be purchased at Colfax City Hall, cost $50 for a single pass and $100 for a family pass, and 10-day punch cards cost $35 for adults and $25 for youth. Pool parties can also be booked during season from 8 to 10 p.m. for $100.

For more information, call 515-674-3306, visit cityofcolfax.org of find Colfax Pool on Facebook.

Contact Anthony Victor Reyes at areyes@jaspercountytribune.com

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