CHARLESTON, W.Va.-- Officials for Camp Virgil Tate and the West Virginia Extension Service are getting closer to replacing to camp's crumbling swimming pool.
"I'm not sure many people thought it was possible, but we're getting there," said Kerri Wade, Kanawha County Extension agent and chairwoman of a committee set up to find money to replace the pool.
"The figure we're shooting for to raise is $850,000," Wade said. "We're two-thirds of the way there."
Camp Virgil Tate's swimming pool shut for good in 2008 after years of problems and decay. Camp staff were unable to come up with a plan to raise the $300,000 needed to repair the pool.
That's when Wade stepped in. Knowing that Camp Virgil Tate is an important site for local 4-H camps, and knowing it's hard to have a 4-H camp without a pool, she decided to see what could be done to repair or replace the facility.
Wade talked members of the local plumbers and pipefitters union into agreeing to donate labor to help with the project, and started a fundraising campaign.
Originally, Wade wanted to build a pool with a saltwater filtration system to cut down on the cost of maintenance and chemicals. But Wade said the pool will be too big for a saltwater system to work.
New plans are for a conventional chlorinated pool. Wade said the existing pool will be completely dug up and replaced. Existing bathhouses will be completely renovated to make them compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, and new fencing will be installed.
The pool will run from four to seven feet deep and include an ADA-compliant ramp.
"We would really love to put this out for bid this fall," Wade said.