Cheney summer parks and recreation programs ramping up


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Enough sponsors have stepped forward so that Cheney residents can enjoy free open swims every Saturday through Aug. 24.

Cheney Parks and Recreation’s summer programs are up and running, with a full slate of activities for kids, adults and families.

The pool has been open since June 14 offering lessons, swim team practice, lap and open swims. Seven sponsors have signed on to provide free open swims from 1-4 p.m. each Saturday from now until Aug. 24.

Parks and Recreation Department director Paul Simmons said the city has added a lift chair to satisfy Americans with Disabilities Act requirements, but added there weren’t a lot of repairs other than standard maintenance needed on the 50-plus year old pool. The city has also elected to try a new approach to chlorinating the pool this year, opting for liquid over granular tablets previously used.

Simmons said the city’s treatment plant uses liquid chlorine, as do many other pools, and they want to see if several advantages pan out.

“We want to give liquid chlorine a chance to see if it will be more efficient,” Simmons said. “The good thing about that is we can switch back if it doesn’t.”

Simmons said the Light Department is also doing some testing of the pool’s pumps to see if they will accommodate the use of variable frequency drives. Right now when the pumps run they do so at full speed. Using VFDs could allow them to run at slower speeds and be more efficient, saving energy and increasing their lifespan.

Sponsors of the free swims are Farmers Insurance, The Edge Church, Solid Waste Systems, Inc., Cheney Federal Credit Union, Pool World, Fellowship Baptist Church and Alpha Nu. Swimming lesson scholarships are available at Cheney Outreach and provided by the Spokane Parks Foundation. Additionally, the Make-A-Splash program is providing free swim passes to low-income families, available through Cheney Outreach or the Parks and Recreation Department.

A list of all the programs and activities this summer is available online at the city’s website. The popular summer concert series returns each Wednesday night at Sutton Park, beginning with the Texas Twisters July 17, and concluding with Dusty Klink Aug. 21. The lineup also includes Rodeo Roger, July 24, Two Dudes, July 31, Fools Circle, Aug. 7 and the Ryan Larsen Band Aug. 14. The concerts run from 6:30-8 p.m.

Also returning is the Friday night movie series, beginning with Monsters, Inc., July 26. Also showing will be Jurassic Park, Aug. 9 and Chimpanzee, Aug. 23. Movies begin at dusk at Sutton Park. Patrons are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and picnic dinners to both the concerts and movies.

A new event this summer is a father/son camp night. Recreation supervisor Kim Best said the campout takes place Aug. 2-3 at Hagelin Park, next to the pool, with check in beginning after 5 p.m. for tent camping only.

There will be swimming at the pool as well as games in the park. After the pool closes, Best said there will also be a movie in the park, but what that would be was not available at press time. The next morning features a pancake breakfast.

John McCallum can be reached at


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