Saltsburg pool

SALTSBURG — Half a mile north of the municipal line in Conemaugh Township is a community swimming pool that has served the township and Saltsburg Borough for more than half a century.

“The pool is a really great thing for this area,” said Saltsburg Council President P.J. Hruska, one of those calling attention to what is needed before the Saltsburg Conemaugh Pool can open for the 2019 season.

Officials on both sides of the borough-township line are striving to raise money for repairs that would allow the pool to open over the Memorial Day weekend.

Hruska said he is “kicking around ideas to raise money” with Bill Petro, chairman of the board of supervisors in Conemaugh Township.

The township owns the pool. A Conemaugh Township-Saltsburg Recreation Board consisting of three members apiece from the township and borough run it, but much of the funding goes through the township.

“It is hard to ask one municipality to fund over three-quarters of it,” Petro said, as he called for “community involvement to help pay for this pool.”

Conemaugh Township’s commitment is more than $5,000 — just for repairs.

“That’s just to get the pool open,” Petro said. “That’s not counting the insurance we have to pay, the startup costs for the water, the chemicals. We’re hoping to get it to self-sustaining at some time.”

The borough council made commitments of $600 in March and $2,200 this week. Hruska expected that there would be more help from the borough, saying Saltsburg and Conemaugh Township are in harmony about fundraising to help the recreation board “get off the ground” for the upcoming season.

“We have seen there is an issue here and have decided to come together,” Hruska said. “We are going to be very instrumental in helping the recreation board fundraise so we don’t have to give handouts, that we can do this the right way.”

The repairs cover drains, new gaskets, computer equipment to regulate chemicals, and more.

“We need a vacuum cleaner to keep the pool clear,” said Barb Stramaski, who presides over the recreation board. “We’re working on getting parts of it replastered. We had a couple places that were flaking off. We have it drained now.”

That “right way” takes a number of forms, including pool memberships for the coming season.

“We are pushing $150 family passes for the season,” Hruska said.

Individual season passes are $75 each, while family passes cover up to six people. Passes will be on sale from noon to 2 p.m. at the pool concession stand.

Those rates are in effect through May 31.

According to the Saltsburg Pool Facebook page, anyone who can’t make it Saturday can contact Stramaski’s daughter-in-law Meghan Bevan Stramaski, who is in charge of memberships and pool rentals.

The pool also has an Instagram page. And it is the object of a Snap-Raise, or, fundraiser online.

“Donations will allow us to provide funding necessary to create a safe and enjoyable environment for our participants,” according to the page seeking $5,000 for such items as a robotic vacuum.

The Snap-Raise effort will continue through May 30.

“We have a wish list we want to start working on,” Barb Stramaski said. “It’s been a while since anything has been upgraded.”

The pool was rebuilt in 2005, with funding started in 2002.