BRIAR CREEK TOWNSHIP — People who live in Berwick and its surrounding communities may once again have a place to swim.
Work started earlier this week on the Ber Vaughn Pool which has been closed for the past two years.
Progress is being made on the community-driven project and fundraising efforts are still underway.
There is activity once again at the Ber Vaughn Pool near Berwick but it is not swimming, it is construction.
The pool near Berwick closed two years ago because local government couldn’t afford to fix some plumbing problems, but after a grassroots fundraising effort coordinated by the Berwick Area Pool Authority and the United Way, the pool could reopen as soon as next year.
“We’re having a really wonderful experience with local contractors coming in and donating their time and labor, showing us that these projects can happen in a really wonderful way,” said Berwick Area United Way CEO Ginny Crake.
Crake is coordinating the fundraising project. She says organizers have their hands full.
“We started looking at all of the details of the bath house, the filtration system, the pool itself.”
Many people who live in and around Berwick say are anxious to see the Ber Vaughn Pool reopen.
“The pool was a huge part of our childhood. We would come down and we would swim just all day long and it was fantastic,” said Nick Yankowsky o Nescopeck.
The pool will not be exactly how Yankowsky remembers it. Organizers say once the pool is finished, the pool is going to look a lot different. There’s going to be a splash pad for the little kids to play on and a wall is being taken down. There’s going to be a ramp so people can just walk right into the water.
“I think Berwick and the surrounding region here just needs that for the kids, you know what I mean? It’s just something we really need.”
Crake says the fundraising goal is $1.7 million and so far the community raised 30 percent of that. Checks can be made out to Berwick Area Pool Authority and mailed to:
139-R East 2nd Street
Berwick, PA, 18603
Organizers hope to reopen the pool by next summer.