Owensboro residents start petition to save Cravens Pool - Tri-State News, Weather & Sports

Owensboro residents start petition to save Cravens Pool

(WFIE) (WFIE)
OWENSBORO, KY (WFIE) -

"I cannot believe they are doing that. I cannot. I raised my kids by myself in this area, and that was a lifesaver that we could come over here. We did not have money to do anything else. A lot of people in this neighborhood are in that same situation," said Linda Jackson.

She wasn't the only one to sign her name on a petition at Franey's Food Mart near Cravens Pool. 

"We have four kids, and they want to go out and do something. Well, that's the cheap option for me to do with them," said another resident, Christine Thomas. 

Many neighbors were upset when they heard the pool may not open this year. They started a petition, placing it in multiple businesses in the area. They hope a few signatures will change some minds.

"My mom didn't have a car when my dad was at work, so we would just walk on over to Cravens," said resident Cheyenne Fox.

Some say they don't have the gas money to make it across town to the city's other pool, Combust. Others said Cravens Pool was the fun thing to do in that area. 

"Everything is 54..54. You drive out to 54, and that's where everything is. What about us here?," Sharon at Franey's Food Mart says. She made sure all customers knew about the petition.

The city proposed closing the pool this year to cut back on spending. City officials say it would save around $150,000 to close Cravens. Director for Parks and Recreation in Owensboro, Amanda Rogers, said it was a tough decision. She said the city looked at duplicated projects and started to cut back. The city currently runs Combust and Cravens pool. Two pools just weren't in the budget. She says she never wants to see a facility close.

"I hate that any facility is closing, but I understand the tough decision the commission is in. I see this as what we can do as a parks department to help minimize that tax burden to our citizens," Rogers says. 

Last year, the city opened Combust Pool back up after a year of renovations. She says that pool can welcome 600 people, and hopes everyone can cool off there this summer. While nothing is official, some of the residents say they are ready to voice concerns at Monday night's meeting. 

"I'd like to see them keep it open. Period. They need to find some kind of funding to keep that pool open," a neighbor signing the petition said.

The property belongs to the Owensboro Public School system, but the city has maintained the pool. This year, officials asked the school system if it could keep the pool open. Last week, Superintendent Nick Brake said the board did not feel comfortable with that responsibility. 

The first reading for the 2017/2018 budget is Monday night, April 24th, at 5:00 P.M. The public is welcome to attend. 

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