I am looking for ideas/tips/programs that help increase  (or maintain) numbers at the pool during the Fall/Winter season. Do you offer an aqua winter camp? Different water fitness classes? Programs that tie in with businesses in your community?I'd even like to hear ideas you have thought of but have not tried yet.  Thanks!

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Every fall when our #'s dwindle, we hold a cardboard boat regatta.  Advertising for it, in effect, advertises the rest of our programs, and we have maxed out w/ our #'s of entrants for the last three years.  We've also consistently had 100-150 spectators.  Afterwards, the participants get to swim for the rest of the programmed time.

Last year we had a real problem getting prize donations, but in years past we've had local business donate prizes and enter themed boats; such as the pizzeria that built their boat entirely from pizza boxes (clean, of course).

I love that idea - thanks for sharing!


This sounds like an interesting idea! What were the perimeters that people used to build their cardboard boats? Size, allowed materials, etc.



Cardboard and duct-tape only; one year we had to disqualify someone who wrapped their kayak in cardboard and tape.  We have a small current channel that's part of the "course" so we tell people to make sure their boat will fit through, as well as be able to withstand the water curtain they pass under.  We also have a 'tips & hints' sheet that we give out with information on how to make their boat stronger (use two layers of cardboard making sure the corregation crosses), tips on flat-bottom boats vs. v-angled ones, displacement, etc.

Thanks! This is an awsome idea, we have a highschool across the street that uses our rec center for their physical education.. I can see this as being a fun alternative to the usual laps and h2o basketball that they do in the pool. Combines a bit of physics too!


Hey Cory - We are going to try and make a cardboard boat to show my manager - will send you pics when it is completed - thanks again!
We attempt to hold a Special Event of some sort at least every two months. It brings people in to the facility, which reminds that what a fun place it is to go. Best advertising you can do, plus usually get alot of free publicity from news media covering the events as interest pieces. Our special events include Float-In Movies, Underwater pictures with Santa, Underwater Egg hunt at Easter, Family Fun Nights (where they play double dare type games), and our new Teen Survivor Night coming up in which teens will compete in "Survivor" type activities being eliminated one by one!
Thanks Lisa for sharing those ideas - I especially like the Underwater Pictures with Santa!

The scuba shop we are partnering with is really getting in to it. They are building a sleigh that Santa and the child will both be able to sit in for the picture. The scuba shop is providing the sleigh, Santa, his suit, camera, etc. We are going to just upload the pictures to Flickr and direct people through our website to go download their own pictures (so we don't have to track who gets what pic). We will have other games and activities going on at the same time in other parts of the pool. Then a float in movie, Disney's Santa Paws will follow.

That sounds great! Could I see the pics on fickr? I have an account ( though I don't use it often.)

Sure, our evnet will be held on December 10. I will jump back on here and put up a link afterward.

Hi Lisa  - We are going to try the Float -In (or Dive In) movie idea this fall - thanks again!


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