Americus swimming pool closing

AMERICUS, GA (WTVM) - As the Americus Blue Tide Swim Team practices this evening, a cloud of uncertainty looms over parents and team members.

Georgia Southwestern State University officials announced the on-campus pool the team uses will be shut down in October to save the university money.

"It cost $60,000 a year to run the pool," said GSW University Relations Director Stephen Snyder. "It needs another $50,000 in repairs and it brings in less than $10,000 a year in revenue."

"With them closing the facility, we don't know where they're going to train at, especially in the winter time," said concerned parent Carl Brown.

Swim team supporters met on campus to discuss ideas on how to keep the pool and avoid having to shut down the Blue Tide swim team.

"Some of the kids may go to Albany or Columbus, but that's a lot of traveling and a burden for parents especially during school time," said ABT member David Murphy.

Area high school swim teams also use the pool. GSW officials said they took that into consideration while making this decision and that's why reopening the pool is not out of the question.

"We're just draining it and closing it," Snyder said. "We're not tearing it down, so that's (reopening the pool) not out of the realm of possibility."

Still, parents and team members want something work out sooner than later.

"There's so many swimmers that have gone through the program that have moved on to collegiate type sports. It's just such a confidence builder for our youth today," Murphy said.

And they want to make sure young people continue to have the chance to build confidence through swimming.

The Americus Blue Tide has a rich history of producing talented swimmers, with Angel Myers Martino being the most successful.

She won three gold medals and three bronze medals between the 1992 and 1996 Olympics.

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