(Orange, Texas)

July 27, 2013

Natatorium to close earlier this year

Dawn Burleigh
The Orange Leader

ORANGE — Citizens are complaining the City of Orange Natatorium is ending the swimming season earlier this year than in the past. It will close on Aug. 9.

The indoor swimming pool at 1405 West Orange Ave., has had signs concerning the change in the end of the season posted since May on the bulletin board and on the city of Orange website, according to Christine Phares, pool manager.

“We stayed open until November 1 in the past,” Phares said. “We lose more than 50% of the participants during the months August through November.”

This trend has been the same the last four years, according to Phares.

“We have not been able to keep the numbers up,” Phares said. “We have tried.”

City of Orange Parks Manager Richard Melancon said staffing was also an issue.

“Our lifeguards are part-time,” Melancon said. “They return to school in mid-August.”

Membership is $20 a month, which is usually from the beginning of the month to the end of the month.

“We are prorating it for those who want,” Phares said. “Otherwise it is $2 a day.”

The pool is open from 6 a.m. - 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday. Open swim is all day Saturday as well as 3 p.m. - 6 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Angela Howard asked the Orange City Council during the Tuesday evening meeting to reconsider closing the pool early.

“It opened one month later this year,” Howard said. “It usually opens in May and this year it opened in June and also closing earlier.”

Howard asked that the pool stay open at least until school started.