STEUBENVILLE - The Belleview Pool, once declared finished for the year because of financial constraints, will officially open at noon Saturday.
The pool has actually been open from noon to7 p.m. daily for swimmers for a week now, but the grand opening will include a ribbon cutting ceremony and a free hot dog and potato chip lunch from noon to 3 p.m.
The hot dogs will be donated by Mosti Funeral Homes.
The pool was declared finished for the year in February when city administration officials said there wasn't enough money available to operate the facility at Belleview Park.
But Councilman at large Kenny Davis announced at the April parks and recreation meeting he was going to spearhead a grassroots fundraising campaign to collect the $40,000 needed to operate the swimming pool for three months this summer.
"I drive around and look at our parks and I can see where our recreation is going. I believe we need to stop talking and start doing things We now have the Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation Center under control. Now I want to hold a fundraiser to raise $40,000 in May so we can open the pool for three months this summer," Davis said in April.
Davis and a team of volunteers immediately sought donations from several charitable foundations and started selling tickets for a chance to win a 2013 Ford Fusion from TEAM Automotive, a 50-inch flat screen television from Frank & Jerry's Furniture and Appliance store and a gas grill from M&M True Value Hardware Store.
The winning tickets will be drawn and announced on June 30 at the Stars and Stripes Concert and Festival.
"The Save Our Pool committee won't stop after the pool is open. We will be meeting on a year-round basis to build up the pool operating fund and hopefully establish a trust for the future of the pool," Davis promised.
By May, two nonprofit organizations, the LaBelle Neighbors Who Care and the Community for Youth Development, had volunteered to conduct the hiring of lifeguards, cashiers, a manager and assistant manager as well as manage the pool.
"I opened my mouth in April and the volunteers and community immediately came forward and made this possible. I am excited the pool is open and very thankful for all of the support we have received during this short campaign," Davis said.
"This is a very positive thing in our city. I know Steubenville has had more than its share of tough news in recent months. But we are doing something positive," Davis said.
Katie Hess of the LaBelle Neighbors Who Care said the Senior Swim activities are continuing this year from 10 a.m. to noon on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
"The sliding board has been closed and no one will be allowed on the slide," cited Hess.
Pool passes will be available at the pool's cashier's station.
"I am inviting and encouraging the entire community to join us at the Belleview Pool Saturday for a free hot dog. Take a look at what a community can accomplish when it comes together for a good cause," Davis stated.