A few years ago, free family passes were given to families in the Osceola community so they could give their children the opportunity to experience the city’s pool. Many families were issued passes, but the guidelines to receive a pass left some without. A new twist to free swim gave all residents of the community a chance to swim without being penalized.
The history of Fern Underwood Free Swim began when Osceola local Fern Underwood was concerned about the restricted access for some to enjoy the swimming pool. She believed children should not be punished if their parents are unable to easily afford the price to swim.
Teaming up with Bill Trickey, Clarke County Development Corporation’s (CCDC) executive director, Fern Underwood could finally fulfill her wishes. The CCDC board generated the idea of buying a free night of swimming and honoring Underwood by naming it after her. From then, the $5,000 budget was approved and the Fern Underwood Free Swim is now in its second summer.
Since June 1, every Monday night from 5:30- 8p.m., is free swimming. The process is made easy. Those interested check in with the pool’s employees and tell them they’re here for free swim. Monday, Aug. 10, is the last day for children and families to attend free swim. First-come basis is the only restriction. When the pool reaches capacity, those who have not yet entered the facility are welcome to come back the rest of the week or wait until the following Monday.
• Article Originally Appeared in Osceola Living – Spring/Summer 2015 — by Amy Hansen