The Union Splash-N-Swimplex has been a popular place for refuge from the summer heat. Even with a maintenance problem forcing the pool to close for one weekend, this year’s attendance numbers are still higher than last year at the same time.

As of July 9, a total of 14,083 had visited the pool. On the same day last year, a total of 13,755 had been at the pool.

“We’ve been at capacity almost every day since we’ve opened,” said Angela Breeden, program coordinator. The pool opened for its summer season May 27.

“If there was any day the pool was not at capacity, it was because of inclement weather or predicted inclement weather,” said Kevin Arand, parks director.

During several days, people have had to wait outside until others leave before entering the pool. The capacity is 400 people.

Arand said if the pool didn’t have to close one weekend, this year’s average would be about 1,200 higher than last year at the same time.

“Weekend days are big days for us. Even with the filter problem we are exceeding last year’s figures in all aspects,” Arand said. “Of course, we’ve had 10 days of 100-degree heat, so that has been a part of it as far as attendance.”

As far as swimming lessons, Arand said more people are taking advantage of what the pool has to offer.

Swimming lessons are booked.

“I’ve had to turn people away,” Breeden said.

About 72 children participate in group swimming lessons and an additional 21 take private lessons. All swimming lessons take place before the pool opens or after it closes for the evening.

Additionally, after-hour pool rental has been booked for months, Breeden said.

“I’m taking reservations for next year already,” she said. “This year, rentals went a lot quicker than in previous years.”

The Union pool uses a punch card system. Swimmers can buy a card with 20 punches for $35. The card can be used for multiple people and can be used the next year if there are leftover punches.

So far, more than 200 cards have been sold, which Breeden said is higher than in previous years.

Water aerobics classes, which has a roster of 30, also are booked. This is the first year the class has allowed 30 people because in previous years an East Central College water aerobics class took place at the same time.

A new session of water aerobics, which does still have openings, will begin July 17. The four-week class is held Tuesdays and Thursdays from 7:15 to 8 p.m.

Arand said he is happy with this year’s totals so far.

“It’s been a great year so far. I’m looking forward to a great second half,” he said.