Yarmuth Family Aquatics Center sure to delight families

The Yarmuth Family Aquatics Center is a showcase feature of the new Yarmuth Family Aquatics Center. (Community photo by Robyn Kaufman)

Johnny Kimberlin can be forgiven for thinking that the Yarmuth Family Aquatics Center at the new Trager Family JCC is the feature attraction of the building. After all, he is the aquatics director.
And the new aquatics center finally gives him the chance to do the kind of activity programming that the old center with its three-lane pool simply couldn’t handle.
At the old JCC, he could have just one activity at a time in the pool. In the new center, he feasibly has the space for swimmers doing laps, the swim team training for a meet and instructors giving lessons – all at once in the same lap pool – while the recreation pool can simultaneously hold aquatics lessons, and kids just splashing around and luging down the water slide.
“One-stop shopping,” Kimberlin said. “Everything happening at once.”
The new aquatics center has a little of everything:
• A “beach entry” so parents can walk their small children into the recreation pool (no wading pool needed) while a plastic alligator, mushroom and an “ombrello twirl” that shoot jet streams of water – much like a water theme park. (There are steps and rails, though, for those who choose to use them.)
• A vortex pool, with currents of water moving in circles beneath the surface – much like water circling a drain – that is perfect for therapy, training or just relaxing;
• A six-lane lap pool, 25 yards long, 11.5 feet deep, and starting blocks at each lane that make the center capable of hosting competitions sanctioned by USA Swimming, the national governing body for competitive swimming in the United States – the body that selects the U.S. Olympics Swimming Team;
• Chair lifts that reach the lap and recreation pools and a newer, larger hot tub, making the entire aquatics center handicapped accessible; and
• A three-tier corkscrew water slide. Children in the community have been waiting anxiously for months for its opening.
The aquatics center is serviced by four family changing rooms with direct access to the pools as well as the men’s and women’s locker rooms.
The activity inside the center is viewable from two banks of floor-to ceiling windows: one on the first floor, in the cafe, where parents can sit and watch the activity; and one on the second floor fitness center.
In addition, a third bank of exterior windows literally bathe the entire aquatics center in natural light – far different from conditions in the pool room at the old building.
Kimberlin expects the water park attractions, the lap pool, vortex pool and hot tub at the new JCC will draw yet more children and adults to the Trager Family JCC.

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