Archive for Thursday, May 25, 2006

New city pool sign of community optimism

May 25, 2006

Bright and shiny, the De Soto Family Aquatic Center has the feel about it of a Christmas bicycle. And it should delight many in the community in much the same way as a long-desired present next to the tree.

It is an investment in the quality of life of this community, a point that was made during the campaign two years ago for the bond referendum that built the pool. It will quite simply change the routines of many in the city of De Soto and surrounding areas during summer months. The investment of hard-earned tax dollars shouldn't be diminished, but the payoff will start with the peals of laughter from youngsters enjoying the spray features, the shouts of enthusiasm of those barreling down the 170-foot slide and the health benefits of taking advantage of morning aerobics classes.

Shortly after the successful bond referendum, we observed the importance of the Community Center to the city, five years after it was acquired from the school district. It is so central in community life, it is difficult to imagine the city functioning without it. We predict the same pool will soon be viewed the same way.

De Soto Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development Council director Sara Ritter told the city council last week she was fielding many calls from those interested in locating "unique" businesses downtown. The investment the community has made in public property near downtown can only heighten that interest and increase chances some will make the investments needed to realize the district's potential with added storefronts and redevelopment.

The community's enjoyment of the pool will begin with its grand opening Friday evening. At its base, it will be time to enjoy a new amenity to the community. But it is also a commemoration of a new sense of community optimism also seen with the building of the new wastewater plant. They signal a populace that wanted to make its own opportunities rather than waiting for some big opportunity to land on its doorstep.

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