By David F. Rooney
If anyone had lit a match near Kevin Coulter last week he might well have exploded. A Pythian and member of that organization’s auxiliary, the Dramatic Order Knights of Khorassan (DOKK), which created and maintains Farwell Park has been llivid since he learned that the City closed the humble wading pool two weeks ago.
The organization has a caretaker, Mahalia Coulter, who lives right next to the pool and who was, he said, diligent about draining and refilling the pool each day and ensuring that the pool’s was treated with chemicals to ensure its cleanliness. The organization pays for the chemicals as well as insurance.
“I was born here and I played in it. My kids played in it and my grandchildren played in it,” Coulter said in an interview. “It was affordable and was perfect for those young families with very young children who didn’t have the money to go to the Aquatic Centre or Williamson’s Lake. What are they going to do now?”
Coulter said the current arrangement was just fine with the City’s Parks, Recreation and Culture Department a few weeks ago and he doesn’t understand why Director Laurie Donato would seek to have it closed.
“We were all on the same page and now there’s this situation,” he said.
He was especially irked that Donato, he said, did not even give the DOKKies a head’s-up.
If there was a real health issue, Coulter said, he and other DOKKies wouldn’t be upset. And, indeed, Donato didn’t cite a health issue in a report she submitted to Council on June 25. She recommended it be closed and the Council budget for A $10,000 automatic sanitation system.
Coulter and other DOKKies probably wouldn’t feel betrayed it the City decided to pursue that $10,000 gadget but they shouldn’t penalize young families in pursuit of that goal.
“It really all about the children,” he said.