LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Celebrating a summer season that almost didn’t happen, Sun Valley Pool opened its doors for the final day of swimming this year.
Shayla Slinker, 16, and her sister Arianna Wells, 15, were the first in line to get in Monday afternoon.
“It means everything to me,” Slinker said. “I mean there’s been an off day maybe but other than that I’ve come here almost every day.”
Sun Valley was one of four city pools that didn’t make it through Metro budget cuts.
“My initial reaction was I was bummed out,” Slinker said. “I was telling my sisters, we were in this little group huddle crying about it and we were like, ‘What are we going to do for the rest of the summer?’”
Hope resurfaced mid-season when Councilwoman Cindi Fowler used $25,000 from her discretionary fund to pay for the repairs and hire lifeguards.
“I could not be more thrilled,” Fowler said. “It has just been a blessing for the whole community, and the tax dollars spent that way I think is very telling on what we can do and how we can make things happen if we really try.”
Food and supplies donated from local businesses helped keep things running, too.
“I’m excited but I’m sad at the same time because the pool is closing,” Wells said. “I wish it could be open all year. You can have hope and sometimes it works.”
If everything goes according to plan, Sun Valley will be open again next year.
There’s $300,000 in next year’s budget for operating costs and deferred maintenance. A big chunk of the money will go toward replacing the pool pump.
Fowler said there’s also money in the budget to open Algonquin Pool next year.
They still aren’t sure about the two others.