A local family pool in the midst of an extensive upgrade got a big financial boost recently from a fundraiser.
Pocohontas Pool, located at 3030 Ojibway Trail in Indian Village, is in the midst of refurbishing its pool and buildings, and the pool’s Swim and Dive Team held a fundraiser at the Fraternal Order of Eagles’ bowling alley to raise cash for the work the group is doing.
The Bowling for POCO fundraiser took place on the afternoon of April 30 at the Fraternal Order of Eagles No. 248, 4940 Bluffton Road. Cost to get into the event was $10 for adults (ages 11 and higher), $5 for those ages six to 10, and children were admitted free. There was unlimited bowling, and shoes were free.
“The Eagles donated the use of their facility, so the Swim and Dive Team was able to rake in everything raised,” said Christina McKay, a board member of the team, and a parent of children who swim with them.
“The Eagles have been great,” McKay said, “the whole gate goes to us, and anything we get, we’re putting toward improvements at the pool.”
McKay said the event was promoted online, by emailing team members, putting an announcement on the team’s Facebook page, and also via word-of-mouth.
In addition, the event featured a raffle at the door for several donated items, including a $25 gift certificate for The Golden restaurant downtown, a $20 gift certificate for the Bead Source, a $25 gift card for Menards, photography sessions with Jaclyn Shaw Photography, various products from the Old Fort Soap Company, an art print from artist Terry Ratliff, prints and pictures from Here’s My Hart, and assorted Starbucks products supplied by Three Rivers Federal Credit Union.
Within the first 20 minutes of the event, more than 25 people were already crowding the lanes, knocking down pins and celebrating with their teammates. McKay estimated the day would attract about 200 bowlers by the time it was over.
The money raised will go to several things that need upgrading at the Indian Village facility, said McKay, who is a school counselor at Belmont High School in Decatur. Improvements are needed in the pump house, the pool house, the locker rooms and the privacy fence around the site.
The group, which usually meets at the pool on Saturday mornings to do the work, also is planning to place new planters and mulch around the facility, repaint several of the playful, nautical-themed murals on the pool house, replace the pool’s backstroke flags, and add 24-hour video cameras around the pool for additional security.
This repair work will be the first done in 15 years at the pool, which has been open since 1961 – longer than any other Fort Wayne Parks’ pool, McKay said.
But, one parent bowling at the event with his young son said it was really about more than just money.
“It’s helping raise money, true,” said Ray Pickard, a father at the event, who has two children on the swim team. “But, it really helps you get to know the other families.”