As Christmas Day quickly approaches, Lakeside's Pool & Wellness Community Taskforce is continuing its due diligence efforts. The Taskforce will be making its final recommendation to the Lakeside Chautauqua Board of Directors in February for a community swimming pool and wellness facility.
In light of this past season's algal bloom and water quality concerns, we believe there is a critical need to protect our residents and guests by providing healthy, wellness-based and recreational alternatives. Of course, Lakeside remains committed to educating our community and others on the vital importance of Lake Erie stewardship.
The Taskforce was assembled in September following the Labor Day weekend Community Forum held in Hoover Auditorium. It is comprised of members of the community, board and staff. The following individuals serve on the Taskforce:
  • Christine Brucken (co-chair)
  • Jeffrey Perkins (co-chair)
  • Laurie Switzer
  • Mark Grindley
  • Doug Bohl
  • JoAnn Bobbitt
  • Margie Shade
  • Marsha Jenkins
  • Jim Young
  • Randy Snow (chair, Lakeside Chautauqua Board)
  • Bill Drackett (chair, Lakeside Chautauqua Foundation Board)
  • Dave Blank (chair, Lakeside Chautauqua Finance Committee)
  • Mike Swallow (Lakeside Chautauqua Foundation Board)
  • Kevin Sibbring (President/CEO, Lakeside Chautauqua)
  • Dan Dudley (CFO/COO, Lakeside Chautauqua)
In addition to these individuals, an E-Focus Group was established representing approximately 40 Lakesiders who expressed interest in assisting Lakeside in this effort. The group has been active in responding to an email survey of desired features and attributes of a pool and wellness facility.
The Taskforce meets via conference call and has conducted 10 formal planning meetings to date and will continue to meet each week as it prepares its recommendation to the Board. One of its first challenges was identifying a suitable location on the grounds where such a facility could be built to serve the community, especially during peak periods of the Chautauqua season.
Roughly a dozen potential locations across the grounds were identified, but the Taskforce quickly ruled out many because of proximity to cottages, lack of supporting infrastructure and required footprint needed to support such a complex. Today, the Taskforce is currently conducting a thorough evaluation of locations in Central Park and the field area on Sixth Street next to the Williams Tennis Campus.
In parallel, the Taskforce created an electronic survey to determine:
  • The most desired pool features
  • How often respondents would use a community pool when visiting Lakeside
  • How many in the household would take advantage of aquatic classes and what type of classes
  • How many in the household would take advantage of wellness classes and what type of classes
  • How many would consider a financial gift to support a pool and wellness programming
The electronic survey was initially sent to members of the E-Focus Group. Members of this group were homeowners in Lakeside and Island View and largely 50 years of age or older. Participants were asked to complete the survey and offer suggestions for improving the survey tool. The survey received a 60% response rate, and we thank this group for their input and suggestions.
The survey tool was then refined and sent to a database of 1,000 households representing younger Lakeside families comprised of homeowners and guests. 75% of respondents were age 35 to 49, and 14% of respondents were age 18 to 34. 73% of respondents had 4-6 individuals in their household, and 12% respondents had 3 and under individuals in their household. 59% of the respondents rent a cottage, and 29% of the respondents were Lakeside or Island View homeowners. 73% of the respondents purchase Weekly Chautauqua Passes, and 18% of the respondents purchase Season Chautauqua Passes. 51% of the individuals surveyed indicated they would give a financial gift to support a pool and wellness programming. The survey generated a nearly 20% response rate.
In addition to completing the survey questions, both groups were able to offer verbatim comments expressing their views, ideas and other recommendations, which the Taskforce greatly values. Results were tallied for both population samplings and produced the following input:
  • The Top 5 desired pool features were a heated pool, shade, waterslide, zero depth entry and lap lanes.
  • Over 65% of respondents indicated they would use a pool every day or once or twice a week.
  • Nearly 67% or respondents would use exercise equipment if made available.
  • The Top 5 desired aquatic classes were lap swim, swimming classes, H2O strength training, aqua fitness and water aerobics.
  • The Top 5 desired exercise classes were yoga, strength training, Bootcamp, Pilates and Zumba.
  • The Top 5 desired wellness classes were wellness cooking, children and youth health & wellness, nutrition, stress management and metabolism.
We most sincerely appreciate those families and individuals who completed the survey and provided us with many good ideas and constructive feedback.
As survey results were being aggregated, the Taskforce engaged two pool building and construction firms that have worked together to develop community, recreational, YMCA-based and residential pools throughout the Midwest.
These firms have been retained by Lakeside to develop pool design concepts for both the Central Park and Sixth Street locations. In addition to the pool design, the firms are working to develop all elements of a pool and wellness complex, including a support building, multipurpose and classroom space, pool decking, fencing and access based on the locations being considered. The Taskforce will also be working with these firms to determine the best water quality system and other supporting technology.
We anticipate this work continuing into early January. In the meantime, the Taskforce will turn its attention to the supporting business plan, including necessary fundraising, operational costs and staffing, and how Lakeside will sustain long-term operations of a pool and infrastructure. Additionally, we will be further refining a timeline with an anticipated opening for the 2017 Chautauqua season.
There is still considerable work to be completed, but the Taskforce is committed to seeing this vision through to reality. Once again, we wish to thank all of you who provided input, shared ideas, made recommendations and offered support for this exciting initiative.
The Taskforce was created to represent the community and your input is always welcome. Please feel free to contact any of the Taskforce members with additional ideas or considerations. You can also provide feedback and questions to
We hope you join us in our optimism for further enhancing the Lakeside Chautauqua experience for all.
Christine Brucken                                             Dr. Jeffrey Perkins
Co-Chair                                                           Co-Chair
Pool & Wellness Community Taskforce          Pool & Wellness Community Taskforce