91-year-old Elizabeth Chevola is lowered into the pool on the handicap lift to participate in water aerobics, a program she started in 1996. Photo by Clare Bonelli

News Release

The last day for full pool hours will be August 6. However, due to the efforts of the Patagonia Regional Aquatic Center (PRAC) team and the school, the pool will be open for water aerobics and laps until the end of September with limited hours. 

“Starting August 8, lap swimming will be from 9a.m. until 10:30a.m. Water Aerobics will be from 10:45a.m. until 12p.m.,” School Supt. Kenny Hayes said. “We will continue that schedule until August 20. Any extension past that date is up to whether we can find lifeguards to work that extended season.” The pool committee is currently working to find lifeguards for that extended season.

Several people have been using the pool for physical therapy, especially water walking, following, or in preparation for, surgery, and at least one person makes regular use of the pool lift. 

Lap swimmers and water aerobics participants from all over eastern Santa Cruz County have been utilizing the pool, making the PRAC eligible to apply for grants that would not be available if only the Patagonia area were being served. About 20% of users come from the Sonoita/Elgin/Rain Valley area. 

Grants are currently being sought to provide a heater for the pool so that it can be open for a longer season. Hopefully, this will be in place in January 2023, though the pool will probably not be open that early. Extending the season will increase costs to PRAC considerably.

In addition to free pool entry for kids under 12, veterans, disabled firefighters, etc, sponsorships are available for people who want to swim, but can’t afford the fees. Email Samantha Carlson at patagoniapool1@gmail.com if you need a sponsorship. 

Watch the weekly PRT enewsletter and check the pool’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/PatagoniaPool